A break from workaday

October 12, 2007

Sometime back I revealed the imminent incoming of new life into my family of two.  The prognosticators of the medical profession say the date will be the 23rd of January and in preparation for the arrival my wife and I have been brainstorming.  What will our lives look like when he or she moves from the interior womb life and enters the fray? (We have decided to let the birth reveal the sex) Who will take care of the child when maternity leave is over and we both need to be in the workforce?

Yesterday a ray of light shone through and my supervisor has graciously allowed me some leeway in my future schedule.  It will go something like this: G goes back to work after three months with babe and I start paternity leave for 1-2 months.  I return back to work on a reduced schedule opposite G so that the babe will always be in our care.  This gift will last until babe turns one and then we will need to reassess.  The details have not been finalized but after the talk with my supervisor I feel the joy of this surprising opportunity.

And this relates to my dream job how?  Well I imagine (and this may all be imagination) that I may have some space in my days while watching the infant child–to pound away on this keyboard or scribble in my journal or float some watercolors onto a page.  As I watch this new life take shape I can fuel my own creative urges and release the pent up energies of this being.

Perhaps we will see that we do not need as much money to survive and the trade-off of being with the child is worth less savings.  Maybe my imaginative dwellings will go wonderful places and transform into work of another kind that lends pecuniary support to our materialistic needs. 

Either way I’m excited to have the chance to be a father and for a time the primary care giver.  I know this is not a traditional role for the males of our society but an arrangement that works well for our life situation and suits this non-typical man.  And I may have a little more time to dream of the job that I want to bring into reality.

More folks have thoughts about their jobs…

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13 Responses to “A break from workaday”

  1. dana Says:

    Terrific!! My husband took 2 months paternity leave for both of our children. He was the first at the unversity 14 years ago to take advantage of the opportunity. It really helped me make the transition back to work. However, he had big plans to accomplish LOTS of stuff, but alas, the days are filled with the needs and love of the babe….amazing how much time they take up, those little gaffers!! He did manage to find a way to let the babes sleep on his chest while reading. 🙂

    I’m glad you’ll have the same opportunity Matthew. Those times alone with our children continue to be treasured by my husband.

  2. Tumblewords Says:

    Wonderful that you can do this, the most rewarding job of all! Good luck and have fun!!

  3. whypaisley Says:

    oh how lovely for you… i think you should discuss this with the infant forth with,, as it is very much contingent on his or her cooperation!!!!!!

  4. Redness Says:

    Love your post! Bah humbug to tradition – your beloved is blessed to have a wise Dad like you who ‘get’s it’ – good luck and good health to you all!

  5. Matthew Says:

    Dana-what great reassurance that your husband took that same time to be with the child. I realize that I may be too optimistic thinking I’ll have more time to create with the child in arms. I know they are needy, cuddly little beings. Thanks for the encouragement!

    Thanks Tumblewords, will do.

    whypaisley-I laughed when I read your words–I am already in negotiations while babe is in utero 🙂

    Redness-Thank you, that’s the same way I feel. If we could manage it I would stay and homeschool as well. We shall see…


  6. That is the best job in the world. Caring for a baby. No doubt you will look back and cherish the time spent with babe!

  7. sandie Says:

    My husband did this too. As a matter of fact, one of us was always the ‘home maker’ and the other the ‘bread winner’, but who filled each role has changed many times over the last 23 plus years.

  8. Karen Says:

    ONe of my guy friends just had a baby girl last summer. Less than a month later he started a new, much more demanding job. I can tell he has a lot of regets. It is simply amazing that you can do the paternity leave!!

    Karen

    p.s. if the baby comes 2 days early he or she will share my birthday!!

  9. Matthew Says:

    Gautami- I agree and I’m blessed.

    sandie-G and I have often talked of the arrangement, perhaps this temporary set-up will inspire a more permanent arrangement

    Karen-Wow, that’s tough, I hope he snuggles with her every night. I’m sure it is the love for her that prompted his taking the job. One never knows…the babe may land on your day 🙂

  10. jo Says:

    First up huge congrats, second up you are one cool dude to do this! Let’s hope you get a good napper, so you get lots of creative time. A lovely post.

  11. patois Says:

    That’s wonderful, your plan. So very lucky that it will work out for you and yours.

  12. Betty C. Says:

    What wonderful news and what a lovely way to reveal it!

    As for the time to create and write…well, not to be pessimistic, but…well, why don’t you just tell us how it goes!

    Even if you don’t get that time, the time you have with your baby will be so precious that it won’t be any problem!

  13. Matthew Says:

    Thanks jo–about the napping we can only hope.

    patois-many thanks–we feel blessed, lucky, grateful, happy….

    Betty-Right you are, it is a bonus regardless…but one can always hope–maybe I just need much less sleep to get that novel in order 🙂


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