Originally Posted by SchrodingersCat
Probably the most reliable solution is to think of yourself as a single parent and assume that whenever "one of us" has to be with the kids, it will be you. Then, if it turns out that she happens to be available once in a while, bonus for you.
This is the conclusion I've slowly been coming around to. I've been a part-time single dad for nearly a year now, as Vix's travel - not just to Europe, but as part of her (a?)vocation - has ramped up. She is home more than she's not, at least for now, and she does a lot of the heavy lifting when she is home.
But, still, the times keep coming around when it all comes down to me, when I'm doing the single-parent juggling act.
It's hard to find words adequate to express the bleakness of this situation, especially given the sharp contrast with what went before. We certainly had our problems, as a monogamous couple, but we could almost finish one another's sentences when it came to making decisions about our life as a family.
If you'd asked, Vix would have trumpeted the virtues of attachment parenting during the early years, and I would avoid too much work-related travel, or even too much time at the office, so as not to put an excessive burden on her.
We seemed to be in sync, able to rely on one another without even expressing that reliance . . . but perhaps only because the matter never came up, and we never had occasion to articulate our underlying values and principles.
Now, we're at odds, and I can't rely on her the way I did. As I say, she does a lot of heavy lifting when she's home . . . but she's away more and more often, for one reason and another.
(Another part of the backstory is that the air in this city is killing her, slowly and surely, and she needs to spend what time she can in places where it's easier to breathe; the mountains of Germany are quite suitable for that purpose, as it happens.)
The net result is that, even when she's here, I find myself feeling isolated and numb.
We've been joking, between us, that the secret to happiness is lowered expectations. I suppose it's a kind of gallows humor, that.
Well, I can't seem to lower my expectations quickly enough to keep up.