Episode 09: Michael

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In this episode, I interview Michael, father of 2 school aged children and finding his way with 2 shift workers in the family. We talk about sleeping during the day, styling girls hair and the balance between more shifts and more family time.

The Lowdown

– Family of 4
– 2 shift working parents (including some night shift)
– 2 school aged child


2:18 Sleep
2:46 Double shifts
2:58 Kid wakeups
3:16 Who are the people in your family
3:56 2x night shift work
4:00 Ability to swap out of night shift
4:16 Sleeping during the day after a shift
4:48 Need more hours sleep once you have kids
5:10 Parenting super powers
5:20 Turning a tantrum around
5:38 Fatherly influence
5:56 One on one time with each child
6:08 Parenting decisions you make for the sake of sleep
6:29 You do what you need to do
6:36 Partners parenting super power
6:42 Keeping everything together
7:14 Focusing on what has been done not what hasn’t been done
7:40 School pick up and drop off
7:50 In laws help out
8:00 One partner works when the other is not working so 1 parent available a lot of the time
8:10 A 7 day roster means you can have up to 3 days off in a row -> very available to children
8:28 Never used formal child care or OSHC
8:54 Friends helping each other out with an hour or so after school
9:22 Shift work means parents are home at the times when many parents aren’t….
9:38 …..but then away from home on weekends
9:58 Being responsible for children when you haven’t had enough sleep
10:06 Kids still get up early
10:40 Will the kids say we weren’t home enough?
11:18 Inconsistency is our consistency
11:28 Everyone home for dinner 1 or 2 nights a week
11:42 Resilience in children
12:08 Have you been able to choose your path?
12:20 Expectations
12:34 Half of extra shifts are by choice
12:56 Balance between money from extra shifts and time with family
13:20 Make peace with where you are
13:46 Day shift works best for everyone
14:26 Partner has less ability to swap out of night shifts
14:36 Keeping out the house when some one is sleeping
14:58 Next steps?
15:12 Teenage years, more attitude and independence
15:36 The logistics of all children being with a parent or some one else all the time
16:14 Well supported at work?
16:16 Yes, there is a good understanding that children’s needs trump work
16:40 Are you easily replaced at work if you miss a shift?
17:10 Me yes
17:20 Partner a little less so with a more senior role
17:52 Funny or disastrous moments?
18:00 Everyday
18:46 Dads and daughters hair styles
19:14 Father daughter hair styling sessions
19:56 Everyday something funny happens and everyday something disastrous happens
20:16 Is family life what you thought it would be?
20:22 Harder than I thought
20:48 Working around children!
21:14 Any advice?
21:24 Things fall into place
22:22 The more you earn the more you spend
22:34 Priorities and doing what supports that
23:24 Stuck in the middle of those priorities …..balance
23:38 Ability to do extra shifts accentuates that

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   Inconsistency is our consistency   Everyday something funny happens and something disastrous happens, take a deep breath, have a glass of wine and move on