My taxes are done and I will likely finish the new episode of Victorian Cut-out Theatre this weekend. My father will be on his way for a visit tomorrow afternoon and right now, I’m so relaxed that I almost don’t care that I was recently the victim of credit card fraud…almost.
This has been an emotional week. My day job is going through some changes and the past several days have seen me behave not unlike my cat when we take him to vet. I’m sure this job change will be…fine. It always is, and even while I hiss and spit and curse the gods that made me, I always adapt fairly quickly. I’d like to believe that my aversion to change makes me appealing in a Sherlock Holmes-frustratingly-sexy kind of way, but it probably just makes me an obstinate shit*. If the latter is true, I apologize. Take solace in the fact that these stretches of mood don’t happen very often and they are getting shorter the older I become. Regardless, I will be happy to know where I will be “landing” in the interim, which until recently has been the subject of some internal debate. There’s still the matter of a few details, money stuff, how many hours I’ll be working and insurance bugaboos, but I’m coming around to the idea of the new situation.
As I type this, my wife is lounging on the tattered green couch in my office, like a Tennessee Williams heroine.“Why would they put up wood paneling and then paint the entire room white?!” she exclaims. She exclaims a lot of things. “We can change it when it becomes the baby’s room” I said, not looking up from my computer screen. “We’ll paint the top half above the wood paneling like a pirate’s treasure map and the wood paneling can be blue…or something.” Then I turned to my wife. “I’m sorry for just commandeering the concept for the baby’s room, but I kind of like the pirate map idea. Is that okay?” “As long as I can paint mythical creatures on it.” She said. “That that is exactly what I had in mind.” I agreed. My wife and I will start to make arrangements for our new offspring and the office I am typing this in will become a gentle carapace with which to house our tiny, pink ape. Our lives will change and with talks of jobs and babies, I can’t help but wonder how we are going to handle it all.
What I would like is, to eventually work from home. Childcare is expensive and I don’t want Denise to have to cut short her library career, since it took her over a decade of working terrible jobs in the service industry to find it. I think I can swing it too. The career I want is one as a “creative”. Whether it be in the arts or in advertising or some mix of the two. The work I do as an artist is all from home and while some adjustments would need to be made, I think it would be a great fit.
I am aware that the notion of a stay-at-home father, or a man working from home leaves a foul taste in the mouths of some who consider themselves traditionalists, and that’s fine. These folks will not be the people up at three AM hearing my child scream, so they don’t get a say in how our household is run. I have never been what some would call a traditionalist in terms of gender. I taught my wife how to cook, I don’t care for sports and I sob uncontrollably every time I watch the end of The Shawshank Redemption** I also have no trouble admitting these things, which seems to be another strike against me. If you want an idea of how our personalities work and how our household might function, you should read the excellent Brian K. Vaughan written series, SAGA. The fact that I also cited a comic series as an allegory for my marriage and looming fatherhood might also place me in the category of non-traditional male.
*I know I don’t have the cheekbones of a Benedict Cumberbatch to pull this attitude off, but I have the unkempt appearance and sour grimace of a Jonny Lee Miller.
** I’m not made of stone.