by Kerry Rivera
The sweet smell of Coppertone. Kids playing blissfully into the evening hours. Beach days, fun days, lazy days. I love summertime, but summertime today is definitely different than summers spent as a free-spirited youth. Now I’m a grown-up and that means work, work and more work.
This also translates into white legs, sneaking whiffs of sunscreen to get a summer high, and looking out my office window with regret!
But … in the Rivera household summertime isn’t just a change of season, it also signals a changing of the guard for childcare. You see, when school’s out, that also means hubby’s out. He’s a teacher – or as my dad like’s to tease (playfully), he’s a part-timer.
Obviously my husband and I chose different careers. Mine offers year-round fun, his a summer reprieve. Now, before I get any comments spewed at me about the demands of teaching and the gifts teachers bring to our children, let me say I totally agree. Still, I wish all businesses would offer a summer sabbatical.
So yes, I am jealous of the time my husband has off. But even more so, I wish I was the one who got to stay home with my kids for those 10 precious weeks.
As a full-time working mom, summertime is tough. I know I should feel blessed that my family is fortunate enough to have one parent home for the summer. Still, I would gander the large majority of moms would prefer to be the stay-at-home parent for the summer.
I mean come on. He gets to take them to swimming lessons, community classes and soccer practice – all activities I scheduled. And then there will be beach days, museum days and just having-fun-in-the-backyard days. I’ll probably take a week or two off, and there are weekends, but oh how I long for 10 weeks of summer.
What’s funny is I know I’ll also get a number of calls from my husband during his extended break. He’ll call me to vent about short naps, temper tantrums, sibling fights and more. He’ll also carry the torch when it comes to all things domestic – laundry, grocery shopping, cleaning the house and making the meals (maybe my job is not so bad). He’ll have his days when he’ll wish he were in my quiet office. I’ll wish for the chaos of home.
I guess the grass is always greener on the other side.