Sunday, May 24, 2009

Holy Traditional Division of Labor, Batman!

In which I discover that I am home all day and Huck is at work all day and I am wondering how this all happened.

Eight years ago we were broke ass folks, all radical and too good for 9-5 drudgery. So we were working 3 jobs without benefits and bad pay so that when the cars broke down, there wasn't enough to fix them all AND pay rent. Then there was this moment: midnight, a borrowed truck (the sort without a title), and an explosion at the zenith of the West Seattle Bridge. I mean, EXPLOSION. Motor through the hood style. We screamed. And screamed. And at that moment, the darkest sky I'd ever seen hanging over my head, my husband on my left, my baby on my right, the Dwamish River hundreds of feet below us, I saw the evidence of everything that had gone wrong, might have gone wrong, and could still go wrong, and us dangling precariously on that precipice. That was the moment where everything had to change. And so this journey began.

It was the dot.com bust in Seattle. I'd had a W2 since I was 15 and a college diploma and for the first time ever I could not find work. No one seemed to need a secretarial skilled college graduate. We were over-populated. In planning our escape from grinding poverty, we decided that Huck had the more marketable skills of science and math. So, we set to work on his career.

And that lands me here. In this wonderful house. Wondering why I'm here all day and he's gone. This would've killed me, but I just spent the last few months talking to myself and parenting alone so it actually looks quite nice. Some one comes home and relieves me of my shift... sort of. And talks to me. And cleans the kitchen. But it's
certainly not a situation I was TRYING for. I guess I never fully considered the full ramifications of Huck being the bread winner. We were just looking for a way one of us could work a 40 or so hour week with benefits and enough to live on.

But it turns out that parenting full time in a giant house on 5 acres is WAY easier than in a tiny 2nd floor apartment. And being a stay at home mom with just one left in the nest all day is going to be my cushiest job ever. So I'm not exactly complaining.

The work that remains is for me to find some peace with house hold chores. The outside chores get me out of bed in the morning... that and the prospect of a delicious rendezvous with the noble Earl Grey in the sun room.

Peace is on it's way however, with the most satisfying epiphany: No One Can Tell Me What to Do!! except maybe a crazed 4 year old. Otherwise, my life is mine. No boss. No rules. Not much of a schedule. Pleasure in my spine. My time is mine. I don't need no freaking list. I don't need to perfectly plan my day in the most sensical way possible. I can wake up and do what ever I want... sort of... after lunches are made, the bus is caught, the kids are dressed and the teeth are brushed (possibly in that order, but preferably not). And then: the world waits for me. It's a satisfying moment.

Summer "vacation" in two weeks. That will be a different story.

Photos: Blue's third first day of school in the 08-09 year!
Hoosier love in the sun room.

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