Oh, hi. 🙂
It’s been for-evah. Ay yi yi yi yi yiiii! Lots and lots of love to my all of my bloggie friends, I’ve been reading on the bus to and from work, but have been 200% sucking at commenting with my current schedule.
I come seeking positive vibes. My hubs is proposing his dissertation today and I want him to be pleased with its reception so very badly.
In case you are keeping track, this is the dissertation he put off proposing last fall, right after we found out we were pregnant (thank you lord!) with our sweet little babies. At the time, he didn’t feel awesome about the state of the paper, and he felt—and was advised—that another year to come at it from a different angle, with added data, would help his job market prospects. (In retrospect, we have learned he would never “feel awesome” about the state of this paper. Le sigh.)
It’s quite the understatement when I say that it was tough news last fall, because it meant yet another year of living on just my income—except with two babies to feed and clothe, too. It also meant there was no option of me not going back to work after the babies arrived.
I think we’ve done our very best, given the circumstances. I freelanced like mad before the babies arrived. He worked hard on his research, and took on a new research project in the meantime to account for the extra year he’d be spending working toward his PhD.
But lately, it has gotten so hard. Let me preface this by saying that I 7000000% know these are GOOD WONDERFUL AMAZING problems to have, and I am incredibly lucky to have them. But here’s the vent session. Hubs has been working on his paper constantly since I went back to work in July. The tough thing about this period in his life—and I have such super-duper respect for all of you academic bloggies out there, who have these pressures—is that he never gets to “turn off” his work. It is always there, always hanging over him. There is always something else to do on this dissie. A new set of data to consider or crunch. Calling it all-consuming would not be an exaggeration. He works all weekend, every weekend. He stays up until 4am, every night. He is OVER it. Sick and tired of this paper. Stressed. Burnt out. Tired. Blah. Nervous. On edge. Irritable. Ready for the next thing. (Hopefully, working.) But it’s not over yet.
The problem is that this means 99.9% of the childcare falls to me, when I’m not at work. I wake up with the babies at dawn every morning (since hubs has just turned in for his night of a few hours of sleep!), feed them, play with them, prep them for their morning naps, prep the day’s bottles, do dishes, laundry, then rush to get myself ready for work and out the door. (Weekday mornings became soooo hectic that I finally threw in the towel on pumping once the babies turned 6-months old, sniff, and now that they are three days away from being 7-months-old, I have officially weaned them and my formerly-ridiculously-ginormous-and-now-normal-size boobs.) I spend every moment of every weekend with them….do all of the bottles and solid food feedings and diaper changes and outdoor adventures and naps and bathtimes and bedtimes. The babies are my charge, and it can be overwhelming and exhausting. Obviously I love every moment with them, and they are beyond fun and cuddly and miraculous in every way, but it’s also hard.
Side note: I am stuck on percentages lately. I use them 50% too much. Haha.
Plus, I just miss spending time with hubs and wish he could be with the babies more because they are freaking awesome. 🙂 I know he wishes he could, too. And I wish I could be a bigger support to him. His research is TOTALLY over my head and so all I can do is check in (but not, you know, TOO often), listen (though he rarely wants to talk about this) and tell him the truth: I believe in him and we will get through whatever happens.
I feel a little helpless and frazzled and feel no right to whine about it and have no place to take my angst…. newborn twins + full-time job + a PhD candidate husband in his final year = no one understands.
Okay, rant over. I know it’s a temporary thing. Another six-ish weeks of insanity as he takes today’s feedback into account and preps his applications. Then—hopefully—things will settle down a bit. Or, at least, settle into a different type of stress (him traveling for interviews—please lord—and both of us praying a job offer comes through). And hopefullyhopefullyhopefully he will be gainfully employed in several more months.
So any good vibes would be awesome.