I write because I can’t really talk to anyone anymore. My wife doesn’t need to hear any of these diatribes, and frankly I really don’t think anyone can relate, as ludicrous as it sounds to single myself out as a special little snowflake in a world of several billion. And if anyone can, I don’t know them so it might as well not be anyone.
My family that are all parents and have multiple kids, the age gap between us all is practically an entire generation. Of all my parenting friends, almost none of them have more than one kid. The ones that do, their kids are spaced out in age way greater than mine. And there’s nobody else I know with two kids born during coronavirus-era as close apart as mine. I’m not trying to say that my problems are greater than anyone else’s like some sadistic internet pissing contest, but COVID really is this difficulty multiplier that stands at the end of every factoid, ready to make everything worse than it might have been for anyone else who didn’t have to deal with things during a pandemic.
But I have been living my life at a fairly unsustainable pace for a while now, as far as keeping my shit together goes. I try really, really hard on a daily basis to do such, and I have good days, but I definitely am the first to admit that I have some bad ones too, where it just feels like a lot of shit just piles up all at once, and I’m left standing there while my kids are screaming, clocks are ticking, I’m late for school drop off which makes me later for work, and there’s no end in sight.
I’m 99% sure my eldest is sick again. There’s a small chance that she just never recovered from the cold she had a week ago, but the frequency in which she’s sneezing and her nose is runny again leads me to believe that she’s just plain fucking sick again, which means some more fuckface parents of the kids in my daughter’s school are continually sending their kids to school with plagues.
The problem with that, aside from their selfish and inconsiderate behavior that I can only hope for some divine retribution for, is that when #1 gets sick, it’s basically a death sentence for #2 that she is going to get sick 2-3 days later. And then my sitter will nope out because they don’t want to get sick which means I’ll have to call in sick because mythical wife’s career is rigid and can’t call in at the drop of a hat, which makes me look even flakier and unreliable, and I have to deal with days of dad double duty, and working after hours. And then it’s back into the toilet bowl of despair of how much life can suck because of the actions of other people.
Days like today, I’m just burnt out. I’ve been on baby duty for what feels like an endless length of time, due to the fact that we had two kids in such rapid succession. #2 is always wanting to be near big sis, and moving them apart is like trying to keep magnets apart, based on how she will rubber band back to wherever #1 is, accelerating the inevitability of transmission. #1 is frustrated and fussy because she’s sneezing like crazy and her nose is running like a faucet and doesn’t understand why I have to try and isolate her on the other side of the room but can’t trust her with markers or Play-Doh, and I just want to jump off a bridge.
I haven’t had a break in a long time. A day in which I can wake up on my own without any alarms or dog or kids, no long-ass car rides to retrieve kids, or anything that’s remotely time sensitive. A single day where I can wake up as not a dad, have a day where I can leisurely do the shit I want to do without any clocks looming over my head, and have the ability to sit and stare at a wall if I wanted to. There have been some mini-breaks, some afternoons or evenings without the kids, but I’m still having to do one of the above tasks on them regardless.
I just can’t recharge or unwind, and haven’t been able to for well over a year now, and I don’t know if that’s really unhealthy or uncommon, or if I’m just being a melodramatic parent who needs to be made aware that there are millions of dads in similar boats that I just don’t know personally. But today is definitely one of those days where just enough bullshit has been added to my bags to drag me under and leave me feeling drowning again.