The Memoirs of a Stay at Home Dad.
Guest Contributor- Craig Bosman, stay at home dad and spouse of an Active Duty Marine
"Laaagbaarlll. Ahhhsssslk." Random scratching noises. An arm or hand hitting a mattress.
My alarm clock is awake and Elijah is playing in his crib, waiting for me so he can move to his mats and toys downstairs. It’s amazing how my wonderful little boy keeps me busy. It’s such a joy to be be able to take care of him every day. He has grown and I am so lucky to be able to see it happen. His mom is a Marine and often doesn’t get to see him before he is put to bed. The life of a Marine is busy and often demanding while I get to be the stay at home dad.
We did not fully realize how having kids would affect our lives, my wife's military career. Mine as a stay-at-home dad. We have always realized however, how a child’s life is influenced so much by their caretakers especially early in life. I’m not saying I feel babysitters, nannies, or any other person that takes care of a child are bad, we just wanted one of us to fill that role. With that in mind, I have done the best I can to find work or opportunities that I could do to part time while taking care of our little man. Their are also so many volunteer options available, you could never sleep and still have things that you could be doing.
I quickly found that if you try to remain social and network, you will always find amazing ways to spend your time, the part I did not realize was the amount my time that Elijah would take every day. Working on my computer, specifically with others , makes it interesting. You will frequently hear me say 'Sorry, hold on my son has rolled over for the 6th time and he’s trying to go under our couch.' You would think he would realize that I am trying to get work done! So go easy on this rookie stay at home parent. However, Elijah has yet to want to go slow on anything. He just recently turned 5 months and can roll both ways, loves to stand more than sit, and moves every way he can around our floor without actually crawling. My wife affectionately calls him Mr. Wiggles. It’s so accurate in fact I’m thinking about having his name changed.
I love being a part of Elijah's daily routine and life. We both teach an English class on Tuesdays to a wonderful group of Japanese people. He really enjoys the interaction, as well as the attention, I’m pretty sure he has learned how to flirt already. He also likes to sit in his swing at home while I’m preparing our food. I love preparing food and I always make enough for Robin to have food for a couple of days or more for work. OK, I have a confession to make, I’m a Pinterest junkie. I love great recipes especially the crock pot ones now. I would hug he person that invented that amazing thing. Since little man came along that has been a life saver when I did not get as much sleep as I was hoping for, or have a million things I have to get done when I want to spend time in the kitchen.
I think that my least favorite thing about staying home is when Mr. Wiggles is being grumpy. I know, never happens to anyone else’s child right? It seems to happen only when you could really use an easy day of course.
I am truly thankful to all the other stay at home moms that I run into, they are instantly understanding of my situation and often try and help me. While my first inclination has always been that I should be holding the door for a lady but, I have to admit that more recently I have learned that I am allowed the grace to not always do that. It is definitely a nice thing that the other moms knowingly recognize that I am going through some of the same things they are or have already experienced and a little help from them can go a super long way. I think the funniest things happens when I go grocery shopping, which I do two or three times a week as needed, but fail to bring my carrier with me. So here I am filling my cart holding on to Elijah and when I’m almost finished I started trying to devise a plan to unload the cart. As I was walk up to the check-out, I thankfully recognize that I’m in a group where this is normal. They all know me and Elijah by this point. So I simply walk up and pass him off to the other cashier that is not busy and quickly unload the cart. Taking him back when finished. While I probably would not do that stateside, here they always want to talk and play with Elijah anyway, so they are more than happy to help. I'm also quite thankful as well!
Being a stay at home dad is amazing, including all the challenges it brings!
Craig Bosman has been married for 6 years to his lovely Active Duty Marine Robin. Craig is a Stay-at-Home-Dad and also does social media marketing for Bass Bucks and Ducks Apparel. He loves to cook, sing, and enjoys listening to podcasts and books while taking care of his son.