Life for the Mathis family has been turned upsidedown. A few weeks ago Chad got a phone call from a business person in residential construction. It was a Sunday evening and we had no idea the conversation would lead to Chad being employed again. Several phone calls and interviews later we are back in the saddle as a "normal" family. Chad goes to work everyday and I stay home with the girls.
Being thrown back into stay at home mom land has it's ups and downs. The ups include being able to spend more time with my other stay at home mom friends again. (Although this hasn't happened much yet.) Other ups include good health insurance and a steady income. The downside has a longer list. Time as a family has taken a huge hit. Chad is lucky if he's able to see the girls for more than two hours a day. He's in charge of a subdivsion that is a hour and fifteen minutes from our house. Long work days combined with drive time equal little time leftover for being at home.
Chad's return to the working world was an agonizing deicsion for us to make. The past five months have been a dream come true. We were able to spend everyday together. We enjoyed late breakfasts together. Somedays we'd wake up at 8:30 and say, "Let's go out to breakfast today." Most days he'd work outside on the land clearing brush or chopping firewood while I tended to the house. It was kinda like a Little House on the Prairie scenerio. When freelance came to me, he'd take over the house and the girls so I could work. I'd split my work time between home and coffee shops with wireless internet. I joined Curves because I had the freedom to leave the girls with him anytime to go exercise. I went to Walmart with one kid or no kids because he was available to watch them.
So, when this job opportunity came, we were unable to take it without feeling like someone had died. Our 'year of jubilee' was over. We felt gloomy and sad. We sat and stared at the walls as the new reality sunk in. Although we didn't talk to Melody about it directly, she knew what was going on. The morning of Chad's first day of work she woke up early, in time to see him before he left the house. Her first words that day were, "I don't want daddy to go to work."
Chad has just completed his first week of work. We are slowing getting back into the routine of 'normal' life. Toward the end of the day I start to feel like "What do I do with Leah?" I used to be able to hand her over to Chad so I could cook dinner or fold clothes. Now I have to figure out a way to do it all. I am using the sling again. She is big enough to sit on my hip now, which is comfortable for both of us.
The afternoons are the hardest part of the day for me. Starting around 2:00 I feel lost and sad. I wander around looking for motivation and purpose. I feel agitated and lonely and irritable. Sometimes a second dose of coffee helps me escape this funk, but I'm not satisfied with that for a solution. I want to enjoy my days at home with the girls. The mornings are great. If I could just carry that momentum though the rest of the day, I'd be doing great. I am trying view this challenging time of my life to an opportunity for spiritual growth. In the dire hours of the day I want to call out to Jesus for strength and help. For me to grow closer to God is one of the good things that could come out of this abrupt change in our lives.