Thomas was flying out for a couple of days. He hugged Yehoshua and me goodbye.
Zach was sleeping. So he missed the ‘tada’. At ten as the lights were switched off, Zach rolled over on top of me and whimpered, ‘Dada‘.
Dada has gone to Bangalore, Yehoshua said. ‘Zachy go bangalore…’ Dada has gone for office work. When Tofua (Yehoshua) gets his holidays, we will all try and go, I added. He sighed and went on his business of kicking and troubling the older one.
I am the primary caregiver of my home. I take care of the kids, stay up late, hold Zach through the night when he is wheezing and coughing, manage Yehoshua’s schedules, nag him to death about food, showers and everything he needs done. I am also the showerer of hugs and kisses, tickles and teases…
And Dad, what about him?
- He is the guy who pulls out the bedsheets as I hold Zach after he has thrown up at 3 am.
- He is the guy who will go in late to work, as I train Yehoshua for a quiz, because he was sitting next to him and answering the questions too.
- He is the kinda guy who knows I am late for a meeting and will take me to it on a metro and wait patiently till I am done. (After a long day of work, and without a whine.)
- He is the guy who when I tell yehoshua that his seniors had basically copied the macarena steps, plays that song and goes into an hour long 90s’ music session. (If you hear my son, singing Going to the gym, you know whom to blame.)
- He is the only man with me at most Parent Teacher Meetings. (That kinda makes up for the three reminders I have to give him)
- He is also the kind of guy who never finds anything and decides we need a home camera security system. MORE FOR SEARCH than security (I saw my older one try to find his nintendo the same way.)
- He is the guy who gets a set of books to introduce the idea of money and savings to a ten year old.
- He is also the kinda guy who will find a crazy range of books from the library to push the kid out of his comfort zone. He is the one that made us fall in love with Aang.
- He is the man who realises that noise makes him angry and starts wearing ear plugs at home cos the kids won’t stop screaming. And it’s not fair to expect them to!
- He is the man who will spend hours in research before he can make up his mind about anything.
- He is the guy who plays the patriarch when I need him to (the household help, in my experience, always take the men more seriously)
- He is the kind of guy who genuinely feels responsible for the lack of opportunities that we have (be it education, work or health) because of his career and does not shy away from apologising to us about it.
A few months back, Thomas and I were discussing the state of women and homemakers who depend on their spouses for their finances. I could see he was not able to understand what the big deal was and the discussion got personal. ‘I didnt have job for a close to two years. How many times, I asked him, have you ever turned around and asked me if I needed money for anything? Consider that I am privileged, I have savings, incomes even without a job. What about women who follow their husbands into countries without a personal account, an option of a job or even access to their savings! You are progressive, yet you forgot. Those men don’t even care!’ He was hurt and moved. He had gotten it. Every month since that conversation a chunk of his salary gets transferred to me. He is that kinda guy.
The guy who may not get it. But who is willing to listen.
The guy who admits that he screwed up.
The guy who will stand by me and help me through.
The guy who doesn’t get upset when he is questioned about why he lets his older son call him by name.
That guy who doesn’t shy away from showing his kids ‘mama is boss’.
The guy who knows his wife may write in public any personal discussions we may have and never ever get upset about it.
Three years back I had to take a decision to follow a man to a city I didn’t know, to a house that wasn’t mine and without a job to fall back on. I had not been lucky in love before.
If nothing, it was a leap of faith for both, my son and me.*
We are glad we did!
*P.S: Marriage like Mutual fund investments are subject to risks. Please read & experience the offer carefully before investing your time and emotions.