You know, I love being a dad... I really do. But... I've come to realize, from experience, that I'm not the best at full-time stay-at-home fathering. About 3:30 or 4:00 I just melt down. Every little nuisance becomes a big deal. Maybe I just haven't worked out the proper routine, the right schedule.
[Ha!... that's a joke. Me? Routine? Schedule? Never heard of 'em.]
I spent about 4 months full-time (about 8:00-6:00) watching both boys last summer. I had been the primary caregiver for The Painter from six weeks until about 11 months (while preparing for my comps!), but they were shorter days, and I got little breaks in the middle most days.
I fully empathize with ABDMom's BH what he's about to go through. Some have patience, energy. Mine... well, mine runs out about 4:00 PM. Ah well.
Today, I copped out, but then it's better than the alternative. I put on Mr. Roger's Neighborhood. Now we're watching Little Einstein's. [SIGH!] Hey, an hour of educational TV won't harm them. Thanks at least to our DVR. Days like this I fully justify the cost of having cable, even if I rarely watch.
Besides, #1 won't take naps... basically stopped when he was about 18 months. So, this is his quiet time... yeah, that's it. And it's fun to watch The Inventor repeatedly face dive onto the couch, while his brother is trying to watch.
So, just in case any of you out there are of the illusion that some of us miraculously know how to balance work and life, being productive academics and having a family... well, if there are any out there, I haven't yet met them. But then, what fun is a balance beam if you never fall off, eh?