Monday, August 31, 2009

Evenings in our house

When Hub was home with da Boy, I was free to go to the gym and workout or go shopping etc in the evenings, especially after 7 when Boy was asleep. Going to the gym was especially condoned by the Hub since he knows that the workouts do me a little physical good, but have huge psychological benefit. Yoga, spinning, etc. were great for releasing the happy hormones (sorry for the scientific terminology there), and allowed me to handle stress better. Absolutely necessary for the workload I carry.

Now that hubby lives far away, and I am solely responsible for da Boy's (10 mo) welfare evenings are much harder, MUCH harder. A typical evening consists of me picking Boy up from the day care... absolute latest 6pm, getting him home and fed in the high chair. A little snuggling and playing, then we skype Dad so Dad can see the Boy on the monitor. The Boy smiles briefly when Dad is on the computer, but I don't know if he actually recognizes his Dad on the computer or is just amused by a smiling waving happy noise-making image there. We talk for about 5 minutes solely about Boy while he wiggles and plays, and grabs incessantly for the keyboard of my laptop. How was daycare? How much did he eat? Still has sniffles?

Then I go through the nite-nite ritual of changing, storybook, prayer, song. This takes about 30 minutes. Then I return to Skype with the Hub myself. By now it's usually 7:30 or 8p, and now that the Boy is in bed, there is no leaving the house. No gym, no friends, no errands, no quick trips to the office. I am stuck here. Frankly, its isolating and lonely, even with the 2-an-evening Skypes to Dad.

How could I fit the gym in at all if not the evening? With travel time and changing, etc., I count on 2 hours for a trip to the gym, especially if I swim (mmmn, sooo relaxing). There is a nursery at the gym and it is perfectly OK. Actually the Boy is very popular there since, I dare say, he is truly cute and good natured. I digress. So to get to the gym before I get Boy out of daycare in the evenings, I must leave work at 4pm, and I can't seem to manage that. I could pick him up and take him to the gym let's say 5pm and put him in the gym nursery. Then we get home at 7-7:30, and that really pushing bedtime if we include the whole ritual. Moreover, the guilt of picking him up at the day care to drop him immediately off at the nursery, then put him straight to bed is more than I can bear. It seems like the only way I can fit the gym in in the weekdays is to leave the house promptly at 7 am, drop him off at the daycare the moment it opens, get a workout and showered to be into work at 9am. Whew. I'm going to try, but its so hard. And that eats away at my workday.


  1. you sound like the way they show the mom character on the new Wii commercial: having to exercise in her living room, because how else is she going to fit it in?

    it is still isolating and lonely, but I guess it is better than nothing? although, I guess I am just as lonely at the gym as I am at home. I don't know anyone there and most of the time, I don't want to

  2. I might say that it is at least nice that you were able to have your child. There are some who have been dealing with long-distance postdocs (upwards of 4 y) and who have put everything on hold. It is very challenging and very few people seem to understand the situation. Thanks for posting.

  3. I don't envy your situation. Personally I would have chosen to not have a child if I had to deal with a two body problem that was going to be a long-term situation on top of that because I think it just compounds the loneliness and isolation. I take my hat off to you for being able to make it work. Good luck.