Last week, I was in my yoga class. As usual mind wandered off in the middle of pose and I was thinking, it was probably just after seven o clock. Nanny would have left and Murali is now taking care of kids. I was actually mad on him for some reason (in my defense, very valid reason 🙂 ) and when I realized what he was doing at that moment while I was taking some personal time for me, my feelings changed completely. All of a sudden, I was not mad anymore.
You know I then thought, there are not many husbands around, who are okay with wives spending time away like this while they had to stay home and care for kids, that too after a really long day. Not once has Murali said anything against me going to Yoga. One of the Saturday nights, I was actually talking about going to Yoga Sunday morning as well. I said if I wake up early, I will go. You know what he said. He said, “It shouldn’t be like, if you wake up you will go. You should wake up so that you can go”. It didn’t work out the day after, but the next Sunday, I made sure to wake up in time to go to the class, just because of what he said earlier. And trust me, it was the best yoga class I had. It felt so good that after coming back, I gave Murali a hug, thanking him for making me go. How many people are supportive of their wives taking some personal time for yoga like this.
And it is not just allowing me to make time for yoga. Over the last two-ish years, I feel that, Murali has been as much parent as I have been. He has changed diapers, gave kids bath, fed them, put them to bed, entertained them and everything. Everything I have done, he has too. I feel so lucky to have that help around me. Every time someone asks me how do I manage all the work, home, kids etc., my answer always is, ‘My husband helps a lot’. He is truly the best help I could have. Especially when it comes to parenting, it is not just the help with diaper changes etc. that I need. But also, help with teaching kids the right things. Setting the limits like we do. Reading to them; Telling them what is okay vs. not okay; There are many things both parents need to be same page on and I am so glad that I have that with Murali. I have seen my life when people around don’t get the parenting approaches I follow and it is a hell. To have someone, especially husband, understand what we are doing and to do it together is a real blessing. It also helps a lot because, at times, I step out of the line and do something I shouldn’t be doing and he would be there to correct it or just calm me down.
When Abhi and Achu just turned an year old, our current nanny just started working for us. Bringing Abhi and Achu out of their low percentile weights was really a challenge and pain point for me. So I carefully planned their meals, gave our nanny all the instructions and let her do TV-time when kids are eating, so they would eat something. One evening, I come home, nanny tells me that kids ate well that day and she found some Telugu TV songs on some channel that is catching kids attention and that they ate without any complaint. Then it became a regular thing to watch those things when kids were eating. There was certainly something disturbing about what kids were watching, but I was too happy and occupied with their actual consumption of food to notice anything else. When Murali came home on the weekend, and saw what kids were watching, he gave me this look and asked me why kids were watching those sleazy songs. Only then did I realize that, that was what was bothering me too. That was no content kids should watch, no matter what age. I came to my senses and told nanny to not play those songs and try something else. She switched, and eventually kids liked something nice for them and ate. That should have been so obvious to me and it just wasn’t. That’s when we mothers need the help. Isn’t it? That way even if we unknowingly make mistakes, there is someone to correct it.
More than the help itself, I think the most precious thing to me is that I know how much he has changed after he became a dad. Truly, there were times I worried how Murali would be as a dad and I am just amazed at how patient he has become now. We have a strict 2 hour TV policy for kids. Weekdays, we do less than 2 hours, usually. And most of the times on the weekend, it is always me who loses patience and lets kids watch something. Murali, instead, always finds some thing to play with kids; some way to entertain them. It is thanks to him that kids (and me as well) have so much interest and know about solar system. He pretends like we are solar system, we all get to pick a planet and we go around our big orange ball. He so very patiently teaches them how to sort peanuts and beans (he also cleans up later 🙂 ). He pretend plays harry potter bank withdrawal and deposit. Kids are always running behind him asking for experiments to do. Even after the very long and tiring day, he always makes energy and time to take kids out for a walk, without any help. He is the one who plays guitar for kids, indirectly makes them sing.
Add to all that, almost every other day, he is either cooking or cleaning. Sometimes I wish, he would go out to play cricket or tennis like other guys do and instead, he spends all the weekend morning taking care of kids and even cooking lunch and dinner while I makeup for my sleep time. He has an upcoming trip for a week. While I was excited for him to go, he said he was having second thoughts about the trip, worrying about how I will manage the two for a whole week (Don’t worry, I will make my revenge plans 😉 ). Oh and it would be so wrong if I didn’t write about how he puts up with my culinary skills and silently eats all the food I make, without a single complaint. I mean, sometimes even I cant eat my food, but he manages somehow. 🙂
Sometimes, I feel sad that if it is not me, it is him doing all the chores and that it is either one of us getting tired eventually. But I feel so good that Abhi and Achu get to see both their parents spending time with them equally. Every day morning, there is drama of Abhi and Achu don’t want to go to nanny and want to sleep and cuddle with me (seriously, this goes for like 30 minutes every day), but on the weekends, neither of them even notices that I am in the same room. As long as there is nanna, they have everything they need 🙂 .