Yesterday, I sat down to write my usual Wednesday blog post, and managed to get a full four words in before Oliver decided that the place he most wanted to be was in my lap. Well, maybe not my lap exactly, but somebody’s lap, and given that I was the only person home, I had to make due.
Donnette went back to work yesterday. To her great credit, she was pretty okay with this, although I know it had to be at least a little difficult for her.* With Donnette back at work, I am now a stay at home dad for two children, a role that ten years ago I never would have embraced. Even as little as five years ago, I don’t know that this is something I would have agreed to, and even now, if there weren’t an end in sight, I don’t know how long I would continue to embrace this role. Of all the sacrifices we are going to have to make to serve as missionaries, right now, this feels like the biggest one. Not that it’s a sacrifice to stay home with my kids, it’s a joy, it really is, but school is over, I’m ready to work, it feels like it should be Donnette’s time to stay home and my turn to go to work. I don’t mean to whine. We are extremely fortunate that we can live off of Donnette’s salary alone, that our kids aren’t in daycare all day long ** and that we do have a call to ministry. My point isn’t to whine, but rather to speak to the incredible difference a calling makes, because while this isn’t what either of us wanted, we know that this is where God has us for now, and that is, ultimately, exactly where we want to be.
I’ve heard it said that the adjustment to two kids from one is as big a change as none to one. I didn’t buy it then, I don’t buy it now. If nothing else, it used to take me 45-50 minutes, mostly due to my inexperience, to diaper and change Avonlea. With Oliver, I’ve got that time down to less than 5. Time = redeemed. Even still, I spent most of yesterday in a state of mind akin to knowing that the house was about to catch on fire, and I haven’t even attempted to take both kids out by myself. *** It’s not as radical an adjustment as none to one, but it still a difference, and until I establish some sort of routine (for myself) I will probably be living life just trying to keep my head above water. ****
I’d love to write more, but I think there’s a baby crying somewhere. We thank you for your prayers. We thank you for your support.
*Maybe not that hard though. New Years day was a bad day for potty training, and as we were rinsing out the second pair of underwear that morning, I joked that she was probably ready to go back to work, and to this, she did not correct me.
**Not a judgment on those parents who use daycare, it just wasn’t something we wanted for our kids, and so we feel fortunate that we can avoid it.
***And won’t, for a very long time. Before Oliver was born, we’d managed to trim the stuff we needed for Avonlea down to a very manageable amount. But with potty training, she needs as much stuff as the newborn, and I can’t carry that much stuff.
****The best joke I’ve heard in a long time is from a comedian who just had his fourth baby. “People always ask me what it’s like having a fourth baby. I tell them, imagine you’re drowning…and then someone hands you a baby.”