Learning to Share

Okay, Dorian.  Here’s what has been happening over the past two weeks.  Mom and dad have finally decided to try out the local housekeeping/childcare services.  That’s why we have had a new friend in our apartment so much.  For some time, mom and I have had many conversations (good and bad) in regard to hiring someone to help out around the house.  I fought it off for a long time.  In fact, I was against the idea even when we lived in Tunis.  I took pride in taking care of our home and viewed it as an opportunity for me to help lower our monthly expenses.  Also, when having hired help is kind of the norm, a part of me enjoys being different.

Neither your mother or I grew up with hired help.  I suppose there is a part of me that fears becoming an entitled person.  Sometimes it can feel like we are treading water in a sea of entitlement.  I will not mention names, but I’m sure as you get older you’ll know what I mean.  I am now challenging myself to take advantage of the opportunity for help without losing who I am in the process.

After all, our situation has changed.  Your sister is preparing for her final trimester inside of mom’s tummy.  We are choosing to hire someone now in hopes that you have ample time to become comfortable with her, as she is likely going to care for you while I am on support duty inside the delivery room.  It will also serve as a preparation for having continued support while I am home with both you and your sister later this year.

After much discussion, your mother and I thought of all the wonderful things that could be done for us with hired help.  Cooking, cleaning, shopping, and childcare seemed like the perfect addition to our daily lives.  Most of it turned out to be true.  However, during the first few days of having our new friend in the house, I quickly realized that this was an imperfect situation.  I was aware that I would have to get used to having someone around the apartment all the time, but I had not anticipated how strange it would feel to share you with her.  Dorian, I love you so much that I only wanted you to be with mommy and me.  Selfish, but understandable, I realize.

I guess I was disillusioned by the times we’ve asked people to babysit you for a couple of hours here and there.  I never felt the same type of ownership over you then.  There is an understanding in my mind that it is a good thing for you to have access to more playmates than just me and mom.  I guess this time, the hurt took me by surprise.  Perhaps mom and I were too focused on all the tasks that we would want to have done that we forgot about our feelings in the process.

I have complete control over how much time you spend with our helper, so it’s not like I am abandoning you.  I am still a hands-on dad, as you must know.  I am now learning to share one of the most precious people in my life.  I am so lucky to be able to see you everyday, all day.  I am so proud of who you are right now and the influence your mom and I have had on your development thus far.  Our plan is to continue being the primary force in your life for as long as we can.

Dorian, you are the one who has adapted the best in having someone new in our home.  This situation simply reminds mom and I of how much we love you!


2 thoughts on “Learning to Share

    • Hi, Soukeina! You’ll have to share some of your secrets to raising two wonderful children while living abroad. I am remembering your invitation to dinner shortly after our arrival in Tunis, eating on the corniche in La Marsa (Lebanase food?). Your children were so sweet and well-behaved that it left an impression on me to this day! I hope you are all doing well. Thanks for reading!

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