I laughed out loud when Moxie referred to herself as a wet sandwich, because I feel it, too. On my worst days, I feel like a panino that someone forgot to take out of the press: squashed flat, burned at the edges, insides reduced to molten incomprehensibility. But once our decision is made—and we’re definitely close—I feel we’ll both be able to punctuate our work with far more optimistic food similes.
That scheduling problem was indeed a doozy, but thanks to Moxie’s proactivity I was able to speak at the Type A Parent conference about—of all things—moms and dad bloggers working together. I’m reasonably certain the overall vibe in that ballroom was that we already sort of are, but I was probably the only one who benefited from a mom blogger who agreed to share a vehicle with his children for 25 hours.
Ever since I started writing about co-parenting, I hear a lot about marriages and co-parenting arrangements that are in the shitter. This is especially true at blogging conferences, and Asheville was no different. A few people asked what our “secret” is, and had to tell them we got nothin’. We’re trying to understand each other day by day, flailing along in the dark most of the time. One thing that did strike me, however, is how our professional lives (and thus, our parenting roles with the kids) have changed over the years since we split. Five years ago I was working full time, and Moxie was the kids’ primary care-giver. Since then, she’s built herself a new career, and now I’m the freelancer who picks the kids up from school every day.
In a one-income family (do those exist anymore?), the WOHP and the SAHP have specific roles with specific benefits—as well as specific stresses and jealousies that can fester if they’re not attended to. Since we’ve both been on both sides of that divide, I think our appreciation for the other is getting better. If she staggers to my place to pick up the kids looking like her workday ran her over and left her for dead, I can sympathize. And when she sees me looking exhausted from all the skirmishes I’ve refereed, she can smile when she says, “Ha! You think this is harder than breastfeeding?”