So when we came back from our little break at Bluestone Wales, we knew there were going to be some quite major changes in our home.
My wife, through no fault of her own has had to take on a new job with the same company she’s worked for, for 11 years, because her department was closed down. Although it was hard to come to terms with, the truth is it wasn’t a big surprise. We kind of knew that it was going to happen since Christmas.
In her previous job it was two days a week with just two late shifts a month. This new job unfortunately involves three days a week and they are all late shifts 4pm till 9pm. Of course a job is job, but adapting to this as a family is going to take some time.
From the moment our twin girls were born we have, barring a few occasions that either of us has been away overnight, we have always both been there for bedtime for the girls.
So this week it’s been all change and the girls although seem to have accepted that mummy is not there at bedtime. Tonight actually showed that yes they may well adapt, but it’s going to take time. Both R and M turned around to me and asked how long will mummy have to work and not be home for their bedtime.
My heart broke just a little bit, that their little routine of life has been so turned upside down, and adapting to just Dad being there for bedtime is how it’s going to be for the foreseeable future, and very obviously thinking about these new changes. We often, I think don’t realise how much our little ones think about everything going on around them.
My wife and I have also got to adapt and I know that it is killing my wife not to be there to say goodnight and give them a kiss and say I love you because we have always done this together. I have to say the girls are absolutely fine going to bed with just me, but there is no doubt in my mind they are missing mummy at an important part of the day. Although I assured the girls that mummy will be here when you wake up in the morning I didn’t give them false hope that it would go back to the way it was any time soon. Difficult conversation to say the least.
If I was to guess who is probably most affected it would be R mainly, because she has always been more for my wife. In fact over the last couple of days she has been asking to go to bed at 5.30pm. Of course I say no it’s too early. This got me wondering why. I came to the conclusion that maybe the earlier she goes to bed, the quicker her mummy will be home. Who knows how a five year olds mind works.
I know that they say children adapt quickly and easily and maybe that is true, but our girls have been doing this routine for over five years so I feel it’s a very gradual work in process that has to carefully handled. I also think as parents that we are having to adapt to this new routine, which is not easy because nobody likes change.
Do you put your children to bed together or does either mum or dad do it on their own? I would love to know your thoughts.