The Short of It
This dad just learned the hard way what stay-at-home moms do all day.
Australian dad Brad Kearns feels our pain, stay-at-home moms!
After being thrust into full-time childcare duty when his wife Sarah suddenly fell ill with liver failure, the father of two found out just exactly how hard it is to stay home all day and take care of the kids—and he detailed his 24-hour experience as a "Dadmum" in a hilarious and honest Facebook post that's now going viral.
"You know when your wife always says 'I wish I could be the dad' and you're like ... It's the same thing..." Kearns begins his post. 'Well sit back, relax, grab a drink, some popcorn, clear your schedule and hold onto your bootlaces because I'm about to take you on a ride that could only be likened to a backwards 100 mph roller coaster that takes you through waterfalls of vomit, shit and lots of tears. And once you're finished with yours you will move onto the children's."
Ha! So true!
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He goes on to explain that he had to rush out of work early the day before after receiving an urgent text from his wife. "And that's when I became the mum," he wrote, launching into a play-by-play: "5:00pm arrival at home - The Eagles Land. 5:01pm... Initial scans of the house: 1. Living quarters trashed 2. Rations reduced to tiny teddies, gravy stock, tea bags and a clear lack of defrosted meat 3. Knox (2yo) limited speech ability wants to watch a DVD and communicated this by roaring at me. Finn (6wks) communicates only by way of the hot and cold guessing game, crying for hot and emphatic crying for cold. [sic]"
Sound pretty par for the course so far!
He then describes how he used a DVD to "buy time" with Knox and a bottle to quiet Finn. But as the night rolls on, the exhausted dad's patience begins to wear thin. "I reduce myself to keeping Knox quiet by allowing him to place stickers on my (very hairy) legs," he explains, adding that he would be able to shave them off in the morning, as long as Knox stayed occupied and Finn didn't wake up.
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But Finn did wake up. At 10:30. And 12:00. And 1:45. And 3:30. "I was so excited to know the trend would continue at 5:00 except it was actually the beginning of the new day," Kearns writes. "Did you know sleep deprivation is a form of torture??? So there I was... At 5:30am sitting on the lounge with Finn... When Knox enters the room and says "Hi". That's the moment I realised I would rather be the dad. [sic]"
Finally, a dad who understands what it's really like to stay at home with the kids all day! You know, besides lie on the couch eating bons bons and watching soap operas (wink, wink). And Kearns is going to keep sharing his experiences while his wife recovers on a community Facebook page he created called DaDMuM.
Now that my kids are older, I'd actually forgotten how tough it was to be home with two little ones. But Kearns' post took me right back. I love that he was so honest about all the craziness. And in a weird way, it actually made me feel a little nostalgic for it. I may have been stuck in the house all day back then, feeling overwhelmed and at times a little demented, but I had my kids all to myself with nothing to do and nowhere to be. I really do miss it.
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So hang in there, dad. It really does get better with time. And then one day, when your kids are in their teens and can pretty much take care of themselves, you may actually find that you wish you could turn back time. I know I do. But only for like a day or two, though. I may be feeling wistful, but I'm not insane.