These 2 weeks are Christmas break. My husband, for the last 2 years has taken these 2 weeks off of work and we spend some time as a family. This year I am also able to spend some much needed time with friends. I am no longer breastfeeding my youngest so I am able to be away for longer periods of time. Yesterday (December 28, 2015) was a “moms day out”. I spent the day with a friend of mine, it was very nice and calm and I enjoyed it very much.
I arrived home just about 6:00. When I came in my husband and the kids were sitting on the couch reading books. They had been fed and were already in their pj’s, ready for their 7:00 bedtime. I was very relieved to be home. Its always nice to be away but coming home to that wonderful scene filled my heart with joy. I wanted to get comfortable and join them.
Then all hell broke loose.
My daughter started screaming and reaching for me. In response to this, my son got very territorial and ran to me demanding attention. They ended up fighting and, I hate to say, my daughter won the battle. I ended up holding her while talking to and hugging my son. Then he decided that we should play and began bringing me his games. My husband and I calmly told him over and over that it was approaching bedtime and we should read some more books but it was not time to get out the domino’s. He got upset and started throwing game pieces.Then, of course, my daughter thought this was a game and started throwing things. They were very quickly giggling together while destroying the room. I asked if they had been like this all day and he said that they were perfectly calm until I walked into the house. My first response wasn’t my finest moment “so this is my fault?” Eeek.
My husband and I calmed everyone down and he took one and I took the other into their separate rooms for bed.
A bit later I had a moment to really consider what had happened. Why had I gotten so frazzeled? Of course they just wanted to spend time with me. They were excited to see me. I was “new”.
Then my husband came into the room and the entire situation became clear.
“Is this what you feel like every day when you come home?”
I realized that I came home at almost the exact time of day that he normally gets home. I have the kids fed and bathed, ready for bed and calm and snuggly. It is the end of our day. Then he walks in and everything goes crazy.
It took him a moment to consider what I had said. I know he wasn’t expecting anything like that. After a very long moment he said:
“yes. But add in the fact that you are tired and then get frustrated about something and end up upset with me”.
Well , shit. Ouch.
Then he really surprised me:
“Is that how you feel every day when I get home? You have worked hard all day and now everything is calm and and quiet and then I get home and everything goes crazy?”
We just looked at each other for a moment. Then I got up and started picking up toys and he went into the kitchen and started loading the dishwasher. We didn’t talk about it again.
I like to think we will end this Christmas break with a deeper understanding of each other. I like to think that we will be able to stop and consider each others point of view a bit better before we react.
We will see.