When family with children is going to visit relatives who live about an hour’s drive away, Dad’s responsibilities do not really start until around the time of departure. Prior to that, Dad might indicate several times that he is annoyed at being the only person who is ready. But only when the same level of readiness is exhibited by all members of the traveling party, will Dad spring to action. He will check the doors and the appliances. He will put the necessities into the trunk. He will carry the baby in the car-seat and make sure it is most securely attached to the base. He will, after all, do the driving.
Mom, on the other hand, will get ready for departure by feeding and dressing the baby, helping the older kids with outfits, hairdos and snacks, packing the diaper bag and the breast pump, keeping track of things that need to be brought along or undertaken along the way. She won’t be ready until everybody else in the house is ready. And her “ready” does not really include getting ready herself.
Only when the driving starts and the baby is strapped in, Mom has a chance to relax… and get ready.
She will finally do her own hair, put on some make-up, eat a yogurt or a banana that pass for her breakfast. In other words, she’ll do all of those things that are not really pre-requisites for leaving home in the family minivan.
Being a passenger in that minivan is the only time Mom can spend on herself.
Or so I hear.
We have only two kids, so we spread the responsibilities. Babies are easy to pack for, as long as you get a list.
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