I can smell my wife’s Chardonnay Turkey cooking. I don’t know for sure if that is why I am up at 5:00 on Thanksgiving, but here I am. 2017 has been a hell of a year thus far. I’ve been reflecting on it, unintentionally, around 4:00 in the morning the last few weeks. Thanks, overactive-brain.
Changing careers offers its own brand of stress. It’s exciting but daunting, probably like dating a sasquatch. I’ve read that changing jobs ranks as high as a death in the family or divorce for stress triggers. So clearly, my wife changing jobs simultaneously should offset any stress I am feeling. Two wrongs making a right and such.
The weight of getting ready to go to middle school is starting to show on my eldest and my youngest has made her best friend such a priority that she is letting the rest of her friendships die on the vine. Turns out, it’s pretty tough to convince a six-year-old that they shouldn’t hang out with their best friend as every single recess. It falls on willfully deaf ears.
There are home stressors, and money stressors and parenting stressors, and time stressors and “getting fatter despite a crap load of running” stressors. It has been asked of me by people I otherwise trust “How can you be so stressed with those three little faces in your life?”. That’s easy, I was never this stressed before they came into my life. They are the source, the conduit and the fuel for most of my stress. Not them exactly, but their happiness and their future. No one mentioned that little fact when they were pressing for grandkids.
But here I am, 5:30 on Thanksgiving morning waiting for the coffee to brew and weighing out what to write about. Here it is: I’m stressed, for the most part because of all the things I should be thankful for. Changing careers is stressful, sure, but the new career will offer me much more by way of personal freedom, time and money. Similarly, my wife is pursuing a dream of hers and it’s stressful because I want it to work for her. Sure, the kids cause a unique brand of stress but it is my desire to see them happy and healthy that creates it.
So, here it is ladies. I’ll keep it short and sweet because mommy is going to want some help in the kitchen before too long. Yes, daddy wakes up too early because of the ever-present voice of doubt in his head and hair is falling out faster than it can grow back in. It’s okay. It truly is. It’s simply not possible to love someone as much as I love you without paying the price around the waist line or the hair line.
On a side note, or maybe the point of the story, is my friend Mai. A year ago today, her son was in a terrible car crash. The stress I feel towards my kid’s future doesn’t scratch the surface of what Mai and her family must feel when thinking of Nash’s journey forward. There are so many parents that deal with so much more than I do. Hell, I’m quite sure that I caused my parent’s hair to change color a lot more rapidly than my daughters do mine. At the end of the day, the story is the same for all of us. We just want what is possible for our little ones. So happy Thanksgiving everyone. Enjoy your turkey, your family and your nap.