As I sit here on a Friday evening, flitting between office work, laminating new price tags and getting myself organized for an early start for work tomorrow, I cannot seem to shake of this icky feeling that has been creeping up all day.
Hundreds of fellow franchise partners are currently kicking back in the middle of Australia, enjoying all that Uluru has to offer a the annual National conference.
The day has been full of photos of the rock, of camel rides around the rock, of games and goody bags, of limousine rides from the airport and cocktails by the pool.
Right now they will be dining at a gorgeous outdoor buffet, and tomorrow will be once again filled to the brim with activities, and a formal Gala dinner.
But we are not there.
It’s funny how others like to presume why, because it was expensive, or out of our reach – it wasn’t, it was very cheap, cheaper than we will ever be able to travel there again.
I will tell you why we are not there.
Because no one will look after our kids.
This leads to another presumption.
That we must live in a different city to our family.
We don’t, the closest family member is approximately 200 metres down the road from us.
We just do not have family members that wish to play an active roll in our lives.
They loved to tell us their opinions of our children’s names, or our parenting styles, the love to make comments to others about us, or complain about things that affect them.
But they play no active part in our lives.
It is amazing the Facebook profiles that display family members hugging up to and playing with our children, the ironic thing is that may be one out of a handful of times in which they have done that.
We have a new business, and with any business, it has been a lot of hard work, many days in a row.
People presume we have a team of babysitters on call.
We have taken the kids to events with us on the weekend, kept them out way past their bed time, or tag teamed with each other so one is at home with the kids and one at work.
And others presume that the fact we have a business means we have unlimited supplies of cash to get a babysitter at any price.
Our business website and details mainly only show Jamie’s name, he was the only one who went to Sydney for the franchisee training course.
The franchise face book page ran hot that fortnight with photos of Jamie’s endless Barista training, and business training. The head of the company was photographed at the end of the training handing Jamie his certificates and gifts.
People think I was not there because I was not interested.
Purely, I could not go because no one would look after the kids.
Others presume that as individuals, we get plenty of “me time”
A recently single friend told me that only now she has become a single Mum, has she got so much more time to herself.
Ironic I know.
You see, like me, she had a husband whom worked long hours, leaving her to have main care of the kids.
Now she is single, people are offering assistance left, right and centre, and her ex has the kids at times too.
She has been on regular nights out, weekends away and even holidays.
I have been a Mum for 7 years and in that time have not had one whole child free weekend.
Others presume that the fact our daughter has not filled in any names for the form for Grandparents day at school is because her Grandparents are deceased, or live miles away.
They don’t .
She has not even asked to bring any of them along.
They just don’t play a part in her or her brothers life.
People presume because Jamie and I have been together for so long, our journey has been easy.
We have had our hurdles, and a lot of them, but we have stuck it out, and continued to grow.
It hasn’t been easy, in fact sometimes I have to say it has been bloody hard!
I bet you read this post and think I am a whinger.
A thankless/ungrateful whinger.
Perhaps I am.
Despite it all,
The missed chances, the hardships and hurdles.
I have one thing to be grateful for.
For being part of this awesome little gang of 4 people whom I get to call my family.
The way in which we have been treated, the things in which we regret, we get to make sure are not repeated.
While the unfortunate thing is too many people do not play an active part in these two gorgeous children’s lives.
I am so very grateful to be a part of theirs.
And while I moan and complain about the things we do not have in life, I never, ever, not once take for granted the fact that we were blessed enough to be parents to not one but two amazing little beings.
And when the tears are threatening to fall, and the dirty green eyed jealously monster comes out to play, and when I get away from Facebook so I can no longer play the “comparison game”, we take a moment to look at each other, and six simple words are said that make it all worthwhile .
“At least we have each other”
And you know what?
That’s worth it all.