During the school year, when Eric has to work, I would say that I’m majority child take-carer-ofer. I do the vast majority of feeding, clothing, bathing, putting-to-bed, playing, etc. Not to say he doesn’t give her attention and play with her, but I’m by far the major figure in her life and we do everything together from playing to going on walks or shopping to eating our meals together whether he’s with us or not (when I’m home and she’s not at her grandparents’ house). So she is fairly glued to me, because, well, we bond. We’re a team, we just get each other.
But now, with the school year over and Eric home all the time and staying up late with no set bedtime anymore, there is a shift taking place. As with last summer, I’m watching my little buddy start to transition her loyalties.
And not only that, but I’m watching it take place with my husband as well. All of a sudden he’s telling me things about what she likes or what she’s up to.
I’m not jealous, I’m actually very happy. As with last summer, it’s really fun and neat to watch my husband take an even more active role in her life, than just the evening play and kiss goodnight. Now he’s the one planning her day, figuring out what to feed her, making sure she gets a nap, ensuring that her diaper bag is stocked and ready, and even helping more and more with the bedtime routine.
In fact, there have been a couple “rough” nights where I was having trouble getting Aria to wind down and be willing to stick to the night night routine, with crying and melting toddler (where you try to pick her up and she melts through your hands and splatters onto the floor as you try to grapple her).. Eric would come upstairs and talk softly to her, “hey.. what’s wrong?” and basically shoo me away so he could finish putting her to bed.
It was nice to be able to finally go get ready for bed myself, but I also felt a little .. dismissed..
Other nights he’ll just take her himself and put her to bed himself without my involvement whatsoever. I will note, however, that my night night routine often takes about an hour, between bathing, allowing some play in her room, getting pj’s on her, reading books, singing, and finally laying a hopefully-calm-and-ready-to-go-to-sleep toddler in her crib, as where his routine is a much more abbreviated version.. I’m not sure what all he cuts out, but I don’t think he sings to her. I think his is just read a book or two and lay her down.
I love when I’m at work and he calls just to tell me something about her. Like that she slept in and he found her with a skirt on that had apparently made its way into her crib and she decided to put on herself and she was in such a good mood and Aria stop drawing on the wall! No, we don’t draw on the wall, she has chalk and she’s drawing on the wall… “Daddy!” No we don’t draw on daddy either.
Those moments make me so happy. Plus he gets to experience how hard it is to get anything done while she’s awake, so he can finally get it 🙂
Oh, and I didn’t even mention how he also has to dress her and get her hair in some semblance of order. He actually does seem to care how she looks, and it’s always fun to see what outfit her put her in. And he’s gotten so good at combing her hair, he doesn’t even ask me to do it when we’re together, he just does it himself.