Wife Swap: The Default Parent Edition

This past year has been the hardest year of my life, which is why I have been so quiet and am only catching up now. I have so much to share, but always seem to choose sleep over anything else when given the opportunity for “mama time” and my businesses inevitably suffered.

Fast forward to 2023 and I am living my best life, and I am here to share with you what I changed to make it happen. Read that again: what I CHANGED. ME. I made the decision to change my situation to change how I felt and I am so glad I did!

Here’s the scoop.

My husband quit his job, so as of January 1st, he has been the stay-at-home parent, and I resumed my role of working full-time on my businesses. This means that childcare is his primary role, BUT we made a “schedule” that I WISH was an option when I was doing it all. What this looks like for us is that he wakes up with the children and cares for them until the afternoon when I take over for him to nap, he makes dinner for us to eat as a family, and then he takes back over for bedtime while I finish my workday. On no-nap days, my workday finishes in time to allow him to make dinner alone and we tag-team the kiddos for bedtime. This process is not set in stone, but it has been wonderful for us so far. As we head into the summer months and I start working evenings out for client portrait sessions, he will likely do dinner & bedtime alone more often, but we also have set aside family days where Mama does not work at all. That has been the best part of the whole role swap; the luxury of a day where we can go with the flow.

Everything Changed

I do not exaggerate when I say that my quality of life has increased tenfold in the last 3 months. Sure, we watch our spending on extras a little more without his income, but the increase in joy and family time while the children are young and our marriage is solid is priceless. Well, there was technically a price, but the dollar amount didn’t actually matter.

Though I do feel compelled to disclose that I am still the default parent as the transition wasn’t as quick as I had anticipated. But that’s okay. Without the burden of all the childcare AND the mental load of motherhood AND the responsibility to maintain the home, I am totally fine with remembering all the things and delegating whenever needed. This works for us. It also means he has the mental space to do some cleaning and household tasks while I am caring for the children, so we are slowly making it through all of the boxes and piles from when we moved two years ago (and had a newborn 10 weeks later!).

The swap is not over, it has only just begun, and I invite you to follow along on our adventure to learn from our mistakes and struggles, and to celebrate our wins together.

Chat soon,