Mutterings of a Fool

Man, Dad, Runner, Chief dog walker

This isn’t how it’s supposed to be

I don’t want to be angry.

I don’t want to resent spending time with you, I shouldn’t feel like playing with you is wasted time, that there is something better to do.

But it’s hard, full days at work then often meetings in the evening. Trying to provide for my family so they don’t have to worry about food on the table. Making sure I ‘grow’ and ‘work on my development areas’ so that at the next appraisal I get a pay rise, any pay rise.

Fitting in the ‘me time’ when only the birds are awake, dragging myself out of bed to get my much needed fix of running. But even this time isn’t sacred, a downward spiral of who can get up the earliest where soon I might as well not go to bed.

I shouldn’t get annoyed at you for this but I do just like when you grab my leg and start whining to be picked up when I’m trying to write a blog. I shouldn’t, but I do and I hate myself for it.

One cheeky smile or seeing you ride around the house on your trucker and the guilt hits me. This shouldn’t be about me.

But sometimes it feels like it needs to be.

I don’t want to be angry.


  1. MarkAtBestDad

    July 27, 2013 at 6:35 am

    Look on the bright side, Ben. Not long now and your daughter will be a teenager. You can be downstairs writing at 5am and say “hi” to her when she comes in from a nightclub at 5/30…

  2. Kevin Cunningham

    July 27, 2013 at 9:06 am

    Thanks for this … really know this feeling and great to have it articulated!

  3. It’s tough dude. The balance between work and family is always a tricky one. Yours sounds especially tricky what with evening meetings.

    This phase won’t last though. We had the terrible early starts for a good few months then it just stopped. It’ll probably start again but then it’ll stop again. Someone told me these things aren’t a problem as soon as you just accept them. It has worked for me.

    As for you time, you do need it. My time used to be the train journey to and from work. That was enough for me. Now it’s an hour or so after Helen has gone to bed where I get to watch crap on TV just for me. But don’t feel bad, you do need it. However you just have to find a good time to do it.

    • cheers dude, it’s the feeling annoyed at them for taking up your time that feels the worse. Doesn’t seem like something a dad should feel, I want to be excited about having time with them.

      • Personally I’ve found that I can’t “do my own thing” while with Olivia. She’s only 2 and wants and needs my attention. So unless I have to do something like cook, the time I spend with her is us time. I focus on us and what we are doing.

        I would never be able to write a blog post with her around. It takes too much focus and she wouldn’t understand. She would want to help, want to play and want to press the keys and I would just get annoyed. That’s not fair.

  4. Oh that pang of guilt when you just need that little bit of space, I know it well. Its completely natural of course but it doesn’t stop us from feeling like the dirt on the bottom of our trainers does it. Chin up Mr, like others have said, this too will pass.

    • I had a nice run AND bike ride this morning which helped, but would be really nice if Henry started sleeping longer, just puts more pressure on.

  5. eliza_do_lots

    July 27, 2013 at 9:53 am

    Hi Ben, It’s Alex logged in as Lizi.

    I can completely relate to everything in this post. I have phases where it just seems too much. Pressure at work, followed by pressure at home, rinse and repeat.

    Sometimes I feel cheated because I didn’t know any of this before I walked blindly into it – but how can you possibly comprehend what parenthood and adulthood is really going to be like.

    I know overall it is worth it, but some times I would kill for a little caravan, in the middle of the woods, miles away from any other person, just for an hour or two…..

    • Thanks for stopping by Alex, I don’t think you can ever truly appreciate how tough it is until you experience it. But that caravan sounds great, perhaps with a BBQ and a beer fridge?

  6. It is hard when you’re so knackered after a long day at work and your babies still have the energy of a Duracell bunny. I want to just stare at e4 at times and do get it when he’s napping but I’ve seen on your timeline you have meetings late at night too making it tough to switch off. I am hoping it does get easier as they get older. It will…it will..I think!

  7. Carving out a little bit of me-time makes family time more special. I think. 🙂

  8. Our littlest has picked up the habit of staying up until about 9.30 at the moment, so I’ve got a continual run of him passing me things and wanting me to read him books. It’s lovely as I get so little time with just him but it is so incredibly frustrating as I can’t do anything. I can’t even load the dishwasher, let alone write a blog post, shoot a video or watch some adult orientated telly. Role on February, as I recently blogged :/

    • Makes it that much harder when you don’t get a break like that doesn’t it? I’m sure you’re not the only parent longing for cold dark evenings 🙂

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