Our family has a lot to be thankful for this holiday season, not least of which is the fact that my husband is starting a new job after several months as a casualty of recession-era layoffs.
As you can probably imagine, this means a lot to us. It means less worry, more money, and a generally brighter atmosphere at home.
It also means that we’re back to normal when it comes to our daily/weekly routines.
I certainly don’t want to paint unemployment as a rosy, relaxing state, but I did become accustomed to having another parent around in the mornings to help get the kids ready and see me out the door on days when I worked away from home. I got used to being able to call my husband at any odd hour to have him pick up groceries or take a child to the doctor. The baby could sleep in and I could pretty much always count on a good meal every evening–one that I didn’t have to cook.
Now, we’re all up at the same time, scrambling to get dressed, get breakfast and make sure everybody’s got all of their gear before Daddy has to run out the door. Then it’s my responsibility to get both children to their destination–oldest to kindergarten and youngest to the sitter on the days when she goes. I come back to do my work in an empty house, then pick the kids up in the afternoon, returning home in time to get dinner on the table.
It’s the new normal, which actually is the old normal, which feels a little funny since we haven’t done it this way in so long.
I’m not complaining, though. I’m thankful for the new old routine. And since I know others are still going through the hell of looking for work, I hope that our good fortune is a sign that things are turning around for everyone.