“What? You have to go into work on your one day off this week? Of course that is totally cool with us! What is important to you is important to us.”
Ok, so that’s a total lie. I didn’t say or think anything close to that.
Maybe that is what I should have said when my wonderful husband called me from work at 10:30pm to tell me that he is the only person available to deliver a catering order tomorrow. I probably should have been more supportive of his situation. This is the off season after all. As anyone with experience in the Florida restaurant industry can attest, business can be painfully slow during the summer months when the snowbirds go flying back to their natural summer habitats. I know that every bit of sales is important, especially right now and especially a large order from repeat client. I honestly do understand that paying someone to come into work just to deliver this food would cost his restaurant more money than he’d like to spend. But, hey, what about your family?!?!?!
I try to take full advantage of every day off he gets. When he only gets 4 days off of work each month, those days are extra vital to making happy memories for our children. I save fun activities for those days. Day trips and special dinners and big events are all planned around those 4 precious days each month. I was planning to take the kids to a local children’s museum tomorrow and maybe make a batch of Christmas Crack. A catering order that has to be delivered at 12:30 in the afternoon and is a 20 minute drive from the restaurant is going to explode my plans for the whole day. In total, I’m guessing this one catering order will take him out of this house for at least 2 hours of the day.
“No. Hell no! Fuck that! Your family has sacrificed time and time again. Tomorrow is about us.”
Ok, so that’s a lie too. I didn’t say that either. But I REALLY wanted to.
I have learned by now that when dealing with a workaholic this type of answer will get you nowhere. I have come to accept that pleading, bitching, whining, complaining and fighting are not going to change anything. I will likely never change this man of mine and (most days) I don’t want to. The only person in this marriage that I can control is me. The only attitude I can influence is my own. Do I wish that he would see all of the sacrifices made by his children and myself? Obviously! But his point of view is different. In his mind, he is working this hard FOR US. I can’t blame him for that. So, what was my real reaction to this (not so) surprising revelation that he will be spending some of his day off working?
That’s the truth. I laughed at the irony of (again) working on his day off. I laughed because this is not the first time and won’t be the last time I find myself in this position. I laughed and began formulating a new plan for how our family would spend the day. I laughed because the real truth is that even on his days off I am still a semi-single parent.
Update: At 11:45am my workaholic hubby kissed everyone goodbye with a very cheerful and hopeful, “I’ll be back in an hour.” Two hours later I received a text saying that he was leaving work and headed home. This made me giggle a bit at his total predictability. Total time devoted to a single catering order on his day off: 2.5 hours. (I always include commutes because it is time away from his family.)
Also, in an unexpected twist… Due to a large thunderstorm in the area tonight, the restaurant lost power right before the dinner rush. Awesome! Shockingly, he didn’t rush back to work. But he did spend most of the evening, including right now while I update this post, on the phone dealing with the numerous issues the power outage caused. It just is what it is, right?