Are those people who are advancing in their careers not actually raising happy, healthy, well-balanced children? Or, are they actually batshit crazy and just hiding it well?
I'm thinking yes. We're all batshit crazy, yet some hide it better than others. And it's becoming more and more apparent that I'm not hiding it well at all. In fact, I hugged my new boss today -- who is not at all a hugger -- and watched my colleague's face distort in horror as she shook her head and joked "We don't do that in our group." I'm reviewing this moment over and over this evening, feeling completely unprofessional and ridiculous, and wondering why the hell I hugged my new boss. Hugged her! In a meeting! With an interviewee present! And the only reason I can think of is that I have finally cracked.
But it's understandable when one considers my recent jarring return to the rat race, right? How the hell do so many people do this?! In the last two months, since Chris went back to work, I have had to
- wake up every day at 5:30 a.m. to feed the baby, then get myself ready for work and Hayden ready for school
- hustle to make it 22 miles to my office by 7:30, work a full day that involves cramming 5 people's worth of work into 7 hours, then shuttling back up the highway at 3pm so I can meet Hayden at the bus stop every day (I actually carry my cell phone in my pocket with the alarm set to ring at 2:55 every day so I -- and everyone around me -- know it's time to go)
- telecommute on Mondays and Fridays with my baby at my side because we couldn't find full-time daycare that we could afford right away
- work out all details of daycare arrangements for every day, including finding someone who could babysit Jake every Tuesday until we could get him into the daycare 3 days a week, then hounding the daycare director weekly until she squeezed him in to a more permanent schedule
- take care of the evening routine solo 3 out of 5 nights a week because of Chris's work schedule --this includes homework, piano practice/lesson, cooking and serving dinner, feeding baby, playing, wrangling, bathing both boys, settling Jake into his crib, then reading and snuggling with Hayden (and don't forget most evenings also come with some negotiating, whining, and room-sending)
- coordinate every aspect of every day's schedule for both kids -- this includes scheduling doctor and dentist appointments and friend play dates, filling out school forms,writing teacher notes, etc. (even if Chris is doing the drop-off or the doctor's visits, I'm the one who handles the details)
I, like so many other moms and dads in the world, work my money-earning job from 7:30 to 3, then work my love-earning job from 3:00 to 8:30. I get a tiny bit of break time between 8:30 and 10 pm when I finally crash and sleep hard. Then wake up and do it all over again. And again. And again.
However, I realized this week that my bosses at the love-earning job are way more demanding and difficult to please. And it's a much more stressful workplace. Which may explain why I hugged my new boss at my money-earning job today. I got confused. I thought, wow, this is nice -- someone who speaks full sentences and doesn't whine or screech and hasn't pooped on me yet today! She deserves a hug!
At which point the new boss probably thought, damn, this one is batshit crazy... glad I didn't offer her too much of a raise just yet. New boss probably should be relieved, though, that I didn't give her a sticker for being a good listener or praise her for getting her shoes on the right feet.