Today I’m heading back into the office. It’s the first day that I have done so since Nellie was born a week ago. I have been keeping in touch with people and activities at work via phone, text messages and email. It’s not like I will face a mountain of memos and phone messages like fathers of past generations would have. Having modern communication tools means that I have a pretty good idea what I’m facing today. However, it means that I will leave Jen, Jake and Nellie at home to see how life will be for my family while Katie is at school and I am at work.
I love my job. I really do. It generally affords me the right blend of the things I like to do (technology, writing, broadcasting, helping those with disabilities, etc.) and limits the things I don’t enjoy (conflict, accounting, doldrum, etc.). Working for Easter Seals Crossroads for nearly twenty years is something that has become a central part of my identity. Many people who know me, know me only in the context of my work there. Being away from that world for a week makes me realize how lucky I am to have a job that I enjoy, working for an organization that I respect, and having co-workers who seem a little bit like family.
I love my family. That goes without saying. With a fifteen-year-old daughter, a one-year-old son, and a one-week-old baby, there’s plenty to keep my wife and I busy, laughing, crying and awake around the clock! Although I look forward to spending some time in the office catching up and revisiting the professional version of me, my heart (and much of my mind) will stay at home with them as they navigate the waters of being a stay-at-home family of three.
With luck, tonight we will sit around the dinner table and talk about how our days went, talk about lessons learned and talk about how “it wasn’t too bad” wrangling two tiny children, a dog, and the tasks required of my wife to fulfill the needs of our two tiny children. If it doesn’t go as planned, we’ll hold each other, console each other, perhaps cry a bit, and talk about plans and strategies to make the upcoming days easier. Either way, we will be OK. We will learn and we will grow, as a family, in love.
If you’re the praying type, please say a little prayer for us. But, also, say a prayer for those families who are separated by military service, long-distance employment, relationships in distress, medical crises, or other situations that keep families apart when they only want–more than anything–to spend the day together.
Wish us luck!