My easy child is an awesome woman to be sure. She found out she was pregnant with darrin a few weeks before her high school graduation. Gave up a full blown scholarship to John's Hopkins University and the medical school......to have her baby around family. Listened when I told her to go ahead and find a new route to for fill her dreams, went on to the RN program at our community college (tough as nails program too) graduated....went to work full time and also continued going to school. One half quater from graduating that program heart issues with Conner's pregnancy forced her to stop burning the candle at both ends. Once her maternity leave was over she went back to work....but didn't start up with school again, decided to take a year off. Has since found 2 programs for the bachelor's that will just let her do the last quarter to graduate.....one which doesn't require additional clinical hours, which makes since due to her still working full time. Several weeks ago she landed her dream job as ICU nurse at a major dayton hospital. in my opinion one of the best hospitals in the area. Job happened to pop up just as the small town county hospital she's worked for got taken over by a corporation and things stopped being about patient care and all about budget. (when a nurse has to fight tooth and nail to justify a cardiac patient getting items such as oxygen tubing there is a real problem) And of course it pays MUCH better that the county hospital. This job change coincided with sister in law taking a new job as a airline mechanic only 20 miles from home as his co was already planning huge lay offs in spring due to the economy. Twenty miles vs the hour drive to cincy was enough to sell sister in law on the job. easy child decided to stay PRN (as needed) at the county hospital until she's sure it works out ok at the new hospital. So far working one day a week. So, this means easy child gets up at 4am to get to work by 7am to work until 7pm.......but if a patient goes bad that can be as late as 10pm and then an hour and a half drive home. Three days a week for city hospital, 1 day for county. sister in law now works 8 hrs a day 2nd shift 3-11pm mon through fri. Their sitter said no way was she watching kids 2nd shift. Daycares close at 6pm. So Nana is watching the boys until a new sitter can be found. I adore them, but in all honesty, it's exhausting. When they first arrive the 2 little ones go down for naps and of course darrin is still in school as it's 2pm. But from about 3:30 on.........I don't stop moving. Conner wakes up from nap, needs a bottle, then darrin arrives and is starving needs a snack, supper needs started, time for brandon to get up from his nap.....so now herding all 3 while doing supper......usually right before our meal is done it's time to give Conner his baby food.....while attempting not to burn supper......then on to feed the rest of us while helping brandon get the food to his mouth (should see him with mashed potatoes omg he loves them and it's a riot!)......then clean the boys up......then on to darrin's homework which is math, reading, spelling packet, spelling words (this can take a while depending on how much he has).....usually with 2 little ones sitting on Nana's lap. By then it's about 7-7:30 pm.....the kids normal bedtime. But they can't go to sleep because Mommy won't arrive until 9pm-ish depending on traffic, accidents, or bad patients. If I let them go to sleep she'll never get them back to sleep. So by 8pm omg they all start falling apart. Not bad, but fussy and tears and well I'm sure you can guess. So.......easy child comes in and she is exhausted. (I can only imagine omg) And she's praying that the boys will go right to sleep when they get home as she should've already been in bed herself. I'm worried. You've no idea how worried. She fell alseep on the way to work the other day. Friday evening she forgot to call and tell me she was on the way and I paced and fretted of course thinking the worst because I didn't hear from her.....until she walked in the door. I can not talk her home from work when I'm herding 3 little boys. Impossible. And then there is those 3 little boys. I understand she's not the stay at home mom type. I totally get that. But there are now 4 days out of 7 those boys don't see their mom. When they do see her......she's exhausted and cranky (to put it mildly).....and darrin is catching the brunt of it, poor kid being the oldest. At least with the little ones she bites her tongue. I love easy child's dedication. I love her work ethic. She's a brilliant girl and a d*mn fine nurse, one of the best. But.......from the outside looking in.....it's at the cost of her family and especially her children. When she came in tonight she exploded on darrin the moment she looked at him. I was so stunned I just sort of stood there gaping at her. She was yelling at him for wearing the same clothes he'd worn all weekend, 3 days in a row since he wore them to school today. He tried to explain that daddy told him to wear them.....and she cut him off that it is his responsibility to make sure, no matter what daddy says, to bathe and put on clean clothes for school. I put it much much kinder than she did. And even standing there gaping I'm thinking, girl he's 7 for one thing and you just told him to disobey his dad for the second! OMG at 7 I still had to tell her to take a bath every night and make sure she had clean clothes. wth? Sound to me like daddy dropped the ball and darrin is catching hades for it because he's available and daddy is at work. It is not the child's fault daddy isn't doing what daddy is supposed to be doing. omg He's a 7 yr old, not a teen! We had this happen last week too over the same issue but not as severe as tonight. Then there is the issue that sister in law doesn't bring the 2 little ones coats. Now once it was warm.....except it was freezing by the time easy child picked them up. But all the other times it's cold out regardless and still no coats. easy child is livid. Darrin isn't the only one wearing clothes for days on end either........2 little ones can wear the same blanket sleeper 4 days in row easy. Now I can go for 2 if they've not messed it but 4 is pushing it in a big way. I see the total lack of patience in darrin's homework too. Actually saw that many months ago, even last year. She tends to jump on him the same way over minor things. To the point where she did it in front of me one night and I had to jump in. I just calmly told her that just because school always came easy for her and she loved it doesn't mean her boys will be the same way and it's not fair to expect them to be. We did talk that time for a while and she did admit she does work hard not to lose it with him over his homework but she does much more than she'd like. I'm worried I'm going to get a dreaded phone call telling me my daughter fell asleep at the wheel.......... I'm worried for my grandkids who when they do get to see their mom she's still exhausted, stressed to the max, little patience and will really lose it with them. A mouth can do as much if not more damage and a hand sometimes. And to make it worse.........I physically hurts me to watch it because this is the environment in which I grew up. Not as severe, sure as there is no mental illness ect and no physical abuse ect. But this is exactly why I refused to work when my kids were small. Mom's don't get to do what dad's do. Even dad's that help, and sister in law does help a LOT more than most, get to come and sit and have a time to chill. Mom's are on duty 24/7 on top of any job outside the home no matter what. Just reality. I never wanted to come home so tired that I ripped my child a new one instead of greeting them with a hug and kiss and a smile. Money is no longer an issue for the kids. That extra school loan they got stuck with because they co-signed on it has been paid off with sister in law's retirement package from his last job. That took a huge financial burden off them. They moved back into their small house which cut their monthly bills probably by at least 1/3 if not 1/2. easy child pays me to watch the boys but I dunno if it's as much as she paid the sitter, it certainly is not what she'd pay a daycare. (omg) I think easy child has grown so used to burning the candle at both ends she doesn't know how to stop. She wants the big fancy well furnished home on the huge land with the nice cars ect.......but doesn't realize that those things usually take many many years to reach, instead of working yourself to death to get them before you're 30. It's like she has this drive to have it all, and to have it as fast as possible. Meanwhile, she's missing the vast majority of this very precious time period in her kids lives........and they're missing the mother they need. And if she works herself to death.......it will all be for nothing anyway. I want to talk to her, but she's so sensitive I'm always afraid she'll take it the wrong way. I'm so very very proud of her. But that has nothing to do with this. She's a fantastic mom......unless she's stressed to the hilt and exhausted and sleep deprived. Heck, I couldn't be a fantastic mom under those circumstances either.......I'd probably be the exact same way. I don't think she's abusive or anything. But c'mon it's heck on a child who hasn't seen his mom all day to have her greet him by tearing him a new one the moment her eyes land on him. I don't care who the kid is and not changing his clothes was not an issue big enough for such reaming either. That's hard on a kid, I know. been there done that Lived it, not fun. Blows your self confidence, self esteem (and we know I don't coddle self esteem so.....yeah) and you start thinking you're not such a hot person..... I can just tell darrin not to do something and he dissolves into tears.....not faking tears, the boy's heart is in his eye like his mom's always were.... He's trying so hard to please everyone, but he can't win. ugh Had to vent it out. At this point I don't know if I'll speak up to her or not. I've tried before and it mostly fell on deaf ears and just gave her a bad case of hurt feelings. Which isn't the intention. I just want her to see if you're not the stay and home type there are alternatives that let you not work yourself to death and be the mom you'd like to be.