Stay at Home Dad’s Vacation

by doodaddy on May 13, 2008

I’m off this evening to southern California, a quick one-day trip to handle some extremely yucky family business. (Not gonna talk about it, just trust me. It won’t be fun.)

My wife pointed out that I’d at least get a good night’s sleep. Given the circumstances (did I mention that they’re no-good-horrible-very-bad circumstances, too?) I doubt that, but it’s true that I haven’t spent a night away from Boobaby in over a year. Somehow I didn’t notice where on my paycheck they print the vacation days and sick days. And I work weekends and holidays, too, although I did get off early the last time César Chavez Day rolled around.

No matter what I write under “occupation” on forms, I never quite feel like I have a real job being a stay-at-home parent, and the paradigm of “vacation time” underlines that difference yet again. On actual vacations where we all travel, my activities — preparing food, changing diapers, calming tantrums — are pretty much all normal. The extended family loves to play with Boo, of course, and they are really helpful about feeding and diapering, but even so, there’s still a fair bit of work to do. If anything, travel makes me feel more like a nanny than a dad.

Adult time is good. I love my occasional evening out but I honestly can’t imagine being away from my daughter for more than those few hours. Measuring my “away time” in days makes me very, very sad.

Tomorrow is going to suck.

See you all on the other side.

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in family,sadness ·

{ 6 comments… read them below or add one }

Xbox4NappyRash May 13, 2008 at 11:04 pm

Good Luck!

ya big softie.

Reply

Audubon Ron May 14, 2008 at 1:14 am

As a northern Californian, just traveling to So. Cal. by itself gave me the heebie-jeebies.

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Rattling the Kettle May 14, 2008 at 4:00 pm

Good luck with the bad situation. If you’re in my area, and need a drink, just holler.

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doodaddy May 15, 2008 at 4:52 pm

Yah, I know what you mean. Although just at the moment Northern Cal feels like Southern… it’s about a million degrees today.

Reply

Backpacking Dad May 15, 2008 at 5:36 pm

I’m feeling a little bit guilty that I’m looking forward to traveling next week for my mother’s surgery, just because I can sleep past 7am and don’t have to worry about figuring out what my daughter will eat for the day.

It is a real job; our vacations aren’t real vacations. Even on our recent family trip I was on duty most of the time, even though my wife wasn’t working and presumably was freed up to watch the baby. But no, she was on vacation. Hmmm. Maybe I don’t feel guilty, after all.

Reply

Jessica May 16, 2008 at 5:56 am

So glad it is all over.

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