Tales about my other wife…
The past holidays brought us many, many gifts. Possibly none were as special as seeing my other wife again, and her family, as they visited over Christmas. We moved into our current house 10 years ago. We found the best neighbors in the world, Troy and LeeAnne, who quickly became our best friends. Simply, they might have been some of the best people in the world. We had similar interests. They had an adorable 3 year old, Drayton at the time. We did and shared all sorts of things together.
LeeAnne was a stay at home Mom. When it was finally time to begin our family, she was our Go-To girl, based on the results of her son. We brought our first child home and LeeAnne was there to assist. I stayed home on my company’s FMLA plan and LeeAnne was my coach. I could not have got through those first 6 weeks without her! All the crying and screaming (sometimes it was the baby), feeding and changing, LeeAnne saved the day. She was the best ‘other wife I was allowed to have!
Six months ago Troy got the sad news he was getting deployed to some place far, far away (30 minutes north of St. Louis). It was devastating news to all of us. How would my wife and I survive without our Go-To girl? What kind of card had fate dealt us? We made some plans for the future and prepared to be separated, from our other wife, across the miles.
I talked to LeeAnne as she left on New Year’s Eve and she agreed to let me interview her. She can get a glimpse to the ‘other husband’ she has groomed me to be. Here is part of the interview from our World-Class Mom:
1) We call you ‘our other wife’ for all that you have done for us over the years, including raking our leaves, babysitting, dog sitting, cat sitting, house sitting, feeding our fish, cleaning for us, and training our nannies. I’m sure there is more, what did I leave out?
Think that covers it. I would like to take a moment to thank ‘Scoopy Doos’ or I probably would have taken that job on. By reading this out loud I was a really good “other wife”. Hee-Hee Maybe I should hire out.
Hire out? I have tried! Scoopy Doo’s was actually a lawn service of sorts that we hired. They cleaned up after our dog. You may have a glimpse
of what slackers of how busy we were based on all she did for us.
2) When our first daughter was born YOU were the one who first taught me how to burp, hold, and change a baby. Then you taught me how to get a baby to stop crying by sitting her in a car seat and setting the car seat on top of the stove, under a running hood fan. It was like sitting beneath a jet It worked like a charm! What do you think was the best thing you taught me as far as how to deal with babies or a new born?
Introducing you to the product “Little Tummies”. I think you had a bottle of it in every room! It must have worked because she doesn’t have a gas problem now. LOL
~ If only my mom had some “Little Tummies” when I was a kid!
3) You are my hero! I am having a hard time staying organized right now plus keeping the house clean, taking care of the kids and looking for a job. You had an immaculately clean home and yard, you exercised, ran, took care of us (!) and were a stay at home Mom with Drayton. How did you do it? What was your secret?
Structure. I plan my days out. After Drayton is off to school I will work out. If you don’t do it first it gets pushed aside and next thing you know you’re saying, “I don’t have time today”. Do it for yourself! I pick a day of the week that is my “big” cleaning day (mopping, dusting, bathrooms, etc) and then do tidying everyday to keep it up. You have to have an idea of what needs to be done and what you want to do or else it doesn’t get accomplished.
Warning, you have two little ones so as quick as you pick up a room they will have it looking like Hurricane Hugo just came through. ( I know!!!) Some days seem like a never ending battle. In my house it is not the kid but the husband that gets home and discombobulates everything!
4) Even though Drayton is 6 years older Dylan idolizes him in a sense. What is the craziest thing Dylan and Drayton have done that you have not told us?
You know all the dirt.
~Now that makes me worry, Hmmmm?
5) Dylan has proven to be amazing in many ways. What was the first memory illustrating that for you?
When she started to take on Drayton. He was rough and tough with her and she held her own. Troy and I still laugh when we talk about the times Dylan actually beat up Drayton and he would holler, “make her stop!” I knew then that she was going to be a strong person.
6) I had never held or changed a baby at all before our first born. You taught me! Did I ever give you any kind of sign that I could actually be a stay at home Dad?
The first time I walked in your house and saw you holding Dylan in one arm while preparing a bottle in the other. You looked so at ease (even though you probably felt like you were going to drop her) and while we were talking you heated the bottle, poured in the formula, then started feeding her. When she first came home you were so nervous but by the end of the first week you knew the basics and could handle her all day by yourself. I was a really proud “other wife” but kind of sad because I knew that I wouldn’t be needed much anymore.
~ I will conclude my chat with my other wife tomorrow. Check back Saturday for the rest of our reunion. I have to tell you though, tomorrow, it gets dirty! Shhh, we’ll need a mop to clean this mess up!
It is hard when families that you are close to move away. Our close friends moved to Florida a few years ago and I still miss them. They were the family that had a little girl my daughter’s age and a son my son’s age. All of our kids were best friends. I have not found a family with that perfect combination again. We are blessed that they still come and visit 2 times a year, but I still miss them and my kids still miss them.
It sounds like you have great friends and had a wonderful mentor.