It was all so stupid. A silly argument with the husband and I was frustrated and angry and it all came out in big fat droplets of salty tears.
Sometimes he is the most frustrating person ever. My job is going from strength to strength, I’m project managing a huge change in the way our department runs and setting up a similar project in Northern Ireland, which means I’m working long hours, and I’m loving it. I love the challenges and the responsibility and the trust people have in my ability to do this. It’s ego boosting and my enthusiasm knows no bounds. But then I come home from my 12 hour day to find the husband sat on the sofa, playing on his laptop, and his first words to me as I step through the door are “what’s for tea?”
When I was off work in April and May my OCD took over and our house was spotless. I spent all day every day cleaning and scrubbing and polishing and bleaching. I had nothing else to focus my mind on other than my own dark mood, so I focussed completely on being a housewife. Now I am working full time and then some, I am still expected to cook and clean and do everything. The husband does some things, don’t get me wrong – he does all the laundry (but leaves it till the weekend and then has to do it all in two days), and he puts out the bins every Wednesday. But cleaning a three bedroom house, changing the bedding, checking there are fresh towels, cooking meals from scratch with fresh ingredients every night, these things need more time than I have to give them at the moment and it would be amazing and a relief to sometimes be told “it’s OK, I’ll do it” just for one or two of these chores. The house is a total mess at the moment – desperately in need of a vacuum and if I’m totally honest a bit of a scrub. Believe me, if I could afford a cleaner I would get one at the drop of a hat.
This morning’s row (rhymes with cow, mumof4) was over both of us having to work late this evening, and what was to happen to the boy as a result. My Northern Ireland project is reaching fruition tomorrow – the big deadline when everything comes together. The husband decided to do a major server upgrade at his office and scheduled it in for this evening. When I reminded him of my own necessary overtime his attitude was that his job is more important than mine. At this point the anger and the frustration bubbled up and overflowed. I got it in check pretty quickly and perhaps even felt better for having reached that point and getting it out there, something I would never have been able to do a few months ago.
In the end I brought my work home with me. Not an ideal scenario (mainly because I get paid overtime if I’m in the office and more money is never a bad thing) as I haven’t finished it yet, but on the other hand I got to spend some precious alone time with my boy and we watched a film and read a story together, something that I know I don’t do enough of. I’m now thinking of making Thursday the one night each week where I absolutely promise to be home on time and to spend some quality time with M.
So perhaps this morning’s argument wasn’t such a bad thing after all.
In case you were wondering, the husband obviously heeded my rant this morning and did offer to cook dinner but then pleaded feebleness and the inability to follow the instructions on the back of an Old El Paso Enchilada Kit box, so I ended up doing it anyway!
So how do you create that perfect work/life balance? Where on earth do you start?