My Successful Other Half is Away On Business this week, leaving me to spend the start of the Easter holidays Home Alone with our three children. Hers used to be my life, and mine hers, but last June I lost my job and couldn’t find another, so my Stay-At-Home-Wife became a Full-Time Employee, leaving me a Reluctant Housedad to my nine-year-old stepdaughter and sons, aged six and three.
This week has been beyond hard work: not just tending to the kids’ food and hygiene needs, but also keeping them entertained because, Heaven forbid, Children Must Not Be Bored in this day and age. But the hardest part has been the lack of adult company i.e. my wife’s company. Her arrival home each evening gives each day definition – someone to talk with, share with, eat with, moan to. And it works vice versa. Without her presence to look forward to, the days merge into one. Groundhog Days.
But if it’s been hard for me, it’s a thousand times harder for my wife. She is currently touring the country in her role as a magazine editor. She hops on trains to here, there and everywhere, and stays in hotels that all look the same, no matter where they are.
But one good thing about these hotels is that they all have Wi-Fi access. She phoned last night, to check in with her kids, find out what they’d been up to. When the phone was finally passed on to me, she said: ‘I’m missing out on their whole entire lives.’
She hasn’t seen our middle child learning to swim, or them helping me with the weekly shop, or the delight in their faces as they watched colourful fish in a tank. She didn’t witness the sight of her youngest in huge 3-D glasses during his first-ever trip to the cinema. She didn’t see her boys laughing like hyenas as they had their first-ever shower together. She didn’t get to see her gorgeous daughter, wind blowing through her hair, as she beat her brothers and their pal at football.
So, Dearest Wife, this post is for you: a pictorial record of what we’ve been up to thus far, for you to stare at tonight as you check in to yet another soulless hotel room. Your soul is here, love. We miss you x