Wednesday, February 20, 2013

Love and Basketball

I've made my return to basketball night after a brief hiatus, coming back as a dad  with with a heightened sense of maturity and composure. 

Okay, not quite. Coming back as a dad, I felt a bit guilty enjoying a couple hours of playing ball while my wife sat at home, her only exile from the house in the past month being a trip to the grocery store.

But I was on a roll, and it was only for two hours. Two.  Out of 168 hours in the week, minus the 40 for work of course.  That leaves all those other hours to hold, bounce, change, and make up songs for my son.

A few of the guys were surprised at my quick return. Others were more impressed with my wife and her allowing me to return. This made me start to question my being out there, and I began to wonder if I should be helping out a little more?  (At home, not on defense).

So I asked my wife again when I got home, and she confirmed that she is cool with basketball night.  Even if it does mean that she'll get no relief until I come home, sweaty and tired, and being of little use. 

I thought that was the end of it, but then a few days ago, as our son was pooping in the tub and screaming for all the neighbors to hear, I slithered off into the night with my gym bag tucked under my arms. Now that I type it, I do kinda suck...

Before Simon was born, I used to play two or even three nights a week.  I know that is not an option anymore, and I wouldn't want to leave him anyway.  I only ask for that one night to get out.  Is that too selfish? 

And this debate rages on, not between my wife and me, but between me and that little voice in my head...the one that sounds like hers. 
I’m getting exercise, in effort to prolong my life, isn't that a good thing? Why, it's not like you're helping out, deadbeat! 

I’m letting off some steam, getting out of the house is good for my well being. It's all about you isn't it? 

It's not like I can breast feed him.  No, but you could clean up while your wife keeps your son alive!  

Man, it's exhausting being me...

I'm looking forward to when he's two or three, maybe then he can come along and work on his game with dad.  He's already boxing me out on the boob.

In all seriousness, I fully understand that life will ever be the same, I knew that going in. In the end, I guess my question is this:  As parents, what happens to our time?

Is it too much to think that we can carve out time for ourselves, or did our time end upon delivery?  Does it resume after a year, after two, 18? I'm not sure my jumpshot can endure that much time off.


  1. The Wife and I have found some balance recently for both of us to find a little time. We also discussed trading off evenings (the way you may be able to get in some ball time guilt-free). We haven't mastered it though, so it's not as frequent as us finding little bits of time here and there. We also have tried to curb our 3 hour t.v. relaxation sessions once the kids are down, though that's been hard to accomplish too. Them kids are TOUGH. Keep tyin'.

    The Cheeky Daddy

  2. I guess it will come with time Jason, thanks for the advice. Hopefully we'll get there!

  3. I wish I could say it will get easier, but with a 3 1/2 year and 2 year old, I truly don't remember the last time that I had just time for little old me. Don't get me wrong, my husband is great at helping, but even when I do get a few free moments, my mommy guilt creeps in, which is my little voice-over in my own head. This is just me though and my opinion.

    1. Thanks Janine, I guess my wife and I will have to learn the routine and see what works!

  4. I wish I could say too that it does get easier, but it really doesn't. It just becomes different, and you figure out ways to get what you need -- whether it's alone time or basketball time or more sleep or whatever -- or you go insane. You figure out new routines that have to be constantly negotiated, because the needs of a little baby are much different than a young toddler and so on. And I would say that I'm much, much better now -- our son will be 2 in April -- at allowing myself to be completely "off duty" when my husband is in charge. What I figured out is that you have to figure out the few things in your life that are non-negotiatable, or things that you need or you won't feel like yourself or even a complete human being. For me, I love to read and I have started blogging and I have one or two TV shows that are "required viewing" for me. And I am more of a night owl and stay up later than my husband. I need these things to stay sane, and I don't feel any guilt whatsoever anymore about them. My husband also picked out a few things (yes, mainly involving sports), and he does them. So my advice is for both of you: choose just a few things (keep playing basketball!) and lose the guilt!

  5. I'll give it a try school, thanks for stopping by!