Thankyou, you guys have really made me smile this morning with your replies
Brickman, I totally agree with you - my daughters definately don't want Mum either going back to school, or going back to work, and I understand that, as I've always been there for them before, at school parties and special assemblies and volunteering to help out on field trips etc., which I'm not going to be able to do much of any more - but at least I still get most of the holidays free, as well as all summer, so we can still have fun then.
What I can't understand is my husband's attitude. As I said, it was HIS idea that I go back to school and get a career, although I am enjoying studying again. He has always had the attitude that his job is the most important, the most tiring, the most stressful in the world (sounds like nursing huh?), but I've been able to cope with that because I wasn't working, and have been quite happy to just be in the background doing the domestic stuff. The problem is, is that attitude still isn't changing: I told him the other day that attendance at clinicals was mandatory, and that if one of the kids happened to be sick on a clinical day, that I would need him to stay home from work and look after them - his answer was, of course, that there was no way he could do that (company would fall apart without him, blah blah blah). I've also bent over backwards trying to get classes as late in the day as possible for my first semester, because he won't take my youngest to school for me if I have an early start for clinicals (and I don't think that waking an 8-year old up at 5am to bundle her off to a child-minder is acceptable - I live an hours drive from the nearest clinical site). I don't know what the class options will be for future semesters, but it may not be as flexible once I start clinicals.
At our nursing orientation, we met with second-year students who told us that child-care was a big problem because the clinical sites were often overcrowded and when they turned up for, say, a 2pm to 6pm clinical, were often told that the times had now been changed to a 4pm to 8pm clinical because of overcrowding. The nursing students who had kids then had to call round & try to arrange extended/alternative childcare at just a couple of hours notice. I THINK I've got the first bi-semester classes sorted out OK, but they don't even tell you the clinical times until after you start the course, which is great for those of us with kids to think about!
I'm not too house-proud, although I get very mentally stressed when the house is really in a mess, I have learned to just shut the kids bedroom doors and ignore the devastation at least LOL! I do have a system where I break the chores down into 10-minute jobs and do them while I'm studying: 30 minutes study followed by a 10-minute chore, which seems to work well when I'm at home at least (stops me falling asleep over my books too LOL!). Hubby did do his own laundry for about a year, but that stressed me out so much because he would tie up the machines for days (you know, wash a load on Monday, leave it in the washer, wash it again on Wednesday because it had gone smelly, leave it in the washer again, finally dry it on Friday, leave it in the dryer for at least a week....Aaaaarrrrgghhh LOL!), so I just started doing it again myself. He does do his own ironing though, because ironing is the one thing I just don't do! Hubby always notices if the house is in a mess, and I get 'comments' when he walks through the door, but not much help. He will vacuum occasionally (very badly), but will have nothing to do with the 'yukky' jobs, like cleaning the bathrooms or mopping floors. Despite me nagging them every day, the girls STILL spit toothpaste out into the washbasins and don't rinse it away, so I have to scrub those twice a day, and nobody except me seems to know what a laundry basket is for. My youngest daughter still wets the bed occasionally, so I often have extra laundry to do first thing in the morning.
Cooking will be the biggest problem I think, I'm a Virgo and naturally a very organised person - except for menu planning, although I have got into the habit of cooking twice the amount and freezing half, it's still hard because eldest daughter keeps experimenting with Vegetarianism (meaning cheese pizza because she doesn't actually like eating any vegetables except for corn cobs and potatoes), but I'm not happy feeding her cheese pizza every day, especially as we have a family history of heart disease. Hubby simply will not eat anything out of a box, frozen, or otherwise classified as junk or convenience food, and likes 'exotic foods' like Moroccan and Indian dishes, which the kids won't touch anyway, so I often end up cooking 2 or 3 separate meals to satisfy everyone. We also like to eat healthy, low-fat meals - so 'hamburger helper' has never been on our dinner menu LOL! I'm sorry to say that hubby's usual reply, if I ask him to cook dinner or do any housework, is "I've just worked a 12-hour day and need to come home to relax, not start cooking/cleaning!". (I can't wait until I can come out with that line too
Yes, I have had to entertain business associates & do the dinner party thing from time to time - but hubby is OK with just going out to eat as an alternative thank goodness!
I'm starting to feel really overwhelmed by all these problems, and am getting stressed out and tearful before I even start! Still, it's comforting to know that I'm not alone, and that others have coped with similar problems. Keep the advice coming please - I need it
Best wishes, Paint.