Mr. Mom and the Make-up Kiss
I work to be an involved dad. Not only when it comes to the kids and their activities, but also as it pertains to my wife and doing some of the things she does on a regular basis… cook, clean, fold laundry, grocery shop….etc. So, when my wife went out with her friends a couple of weeks ago, it wasn’t a huge deal.
Having the girls to myself for an evening of dinner and a movie at home reminded me of one of the most disappointing realities of parenting. Which is that you spend so much time taking care of your kids (cooking, homework, activities…etc.) that you get very little time to be WITH your kids. My evening was no different. I thought making dinner while watching a movie would allow us to hang out while I cooked. It never works out like that.
So, I go to make dinner, but he kitchen is a disaster and I have to clean it up before I can start. This means dealing with piles of mail and newspapers, then cleaning out the dishes in the sink. The dishes wouldn’t have been a big deal except the dishwasher was full. So, I was reminded that my dishwasher is huge when it comes to unloading and tiny when it comes to loading it up. So, after unloading the clean dishes I re-load it and start it. Now, I can start cooking. This always involves more chopping, grating and slicing than I expect before I even turn on the stove. But, before I can begin the actual cooking I need to unload the dishwasher – again – because I have a new set of dirty dishes in the sink. Then, the kids eat their dinner in under three minutes while I eat standing in the kitchen. Then, I find myself cleaning – again. And the dishwasher is now full – again. So, I turn it back on – again. By the time I sit down, I am catatonic from exhaustion and catch the last 15 minutes of the movie. Now, its time to put the girls in bed, which involves at least three arguments between the two of them and the nightly battle on why they can’t stay up later.
I finally make it to my bed with my remote control, my sore back (from bending over the dishwasher half the evening), my tired feet and my book. That’s around the time my wife makes it home. She begins to rub my shoulders, and I explain I am really, really tired and that if she thinks she can come home after being out with her friends all evening while I have been cooking, cleaning and putting the girls to bed and expect me to meet her needs, then she is going to need to keep doing that thing to my shoulders for a little while longer. You see, I am still a guy so I have the complete ability to rally at a moment’s notice.
I will say the advantage of this atypical role-reversal is that I get the benefit of make-up lovin’. This is not to be confused with the post-argument make-up kiss. This means she keeps her make-up ON. You see, after almost two decades of marriage, most evenings together are spent after my wife has spent 30 minutes taking off her make-up only to show up a make-up-less, washed-out version of her daytime self. It’s kind of like kissing a hairless cat – it’s an acquired taste. So, make-up lovin’ is the married guy’s version of the White Tiger – a rare encounter with an endangered species. As one of my best friends told me, “If there’s a downside to make-up night, it’s that afterwards – your pillow looks like you murdered a clown.
© Johnny Hea – 2012 All Rights Reserved