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A Day in the Life of a Stay-at-Home Dad

4 pm

We bounce to the grocery store and I pick up things for dinner. On our way back, I decide that our afternoon snack should be pork buns. We live in Chinatown and there's a ton of delicious, if junky snacks. It's a rare treat but Aki's been good. As soon as we enter the bakery, she starts crying because she wants one. Ah, toddlers. She cries, and then cries harder when I don't give it to her right away. Crap. Now she won’t walk, so I have to carry her, the pork buns, and the groceries home, while she’s wailing and fighting to get down. We make it, and I give her part of a bun for her snack, but what a mess.

Many mothers, when they’re frustrated, cry. I don’t. It’s stereotypical, I know, but my reaction to frustration is to get angry. I want to slam stuff, punch a wall. It’s clearly behavior Aki can’t see, so to blow off steam and keep my general state of being calmer, I’ve been running. If I really hit my boiling point during the day, I take myself out of the situation: put Aki in her crib for a few minutes and go vent, or (the better option) wait until Karen gets home, hand Aki off, and go for a late-night run. But that’s rare. Today’s tantrum is no big deal, and we settle into an afternoon of playing and preparing dinner.

7 pm

Karen gets home and we eat dinner. Then I hide for a bit while Karen gives Aki a bath and puts her to bed. Sometimes I help, but mostly I leave it to my wife. I'm tired of being on duty all day, and this allows Karen gets some mommy/daughter time.

8:30 pm

Aki’s in bed. This is one of my favorite moments, getting some alone time with my wife. We chat and then settle down with a bag of chips and watch a couple episodes of Parks and Recreation.

10:30 - 11 pm

Tomorrow is a running day, so I set my alarm for 6:00, read for a few minutes, and go to sleep.