Delusions of a Stay-at-Home MomPosted: July 12, 2012
Well, our newest little guy is nearly two months old, the same age that my oldest son was when I went back to work. We have been very busy since he was born. As I mentioned in my last post, our little one has been diagnosed with cystic fibrosis. In my next post, I will explain a little bit about the disease and how it relates to our family. Today, I have another topic in mind…
Being a stay-at-home mom!
First, I have to say that I love not working, because instead, I have an extra nine hours each day to be with my children. Simply having more time to play, cuddle, read, make art, learn new things, or just watch TV together (my oldest son and I are currently obsessed with The Ellen Show. Ellen is an amazing person, and she makes us laugh and inspires us with nearly every show). Instead of only eating dinner with my five-year-old, we get breakfast and lunch together too. We have more conversations, and I feel like I learn something new about my inquisitive son every day. Having this time to spend with our two-month-old is wonderful as well. He has just recently started to develop his personality (smiling and cooing at us all day is heart-melting!), and since babies learn and develop so quickly, it makes me so thankful for each new moment that I won’t have to miss.
I have no regrets about my decision to stay home with my boys. However, I have to share with you some of the delusions that I had about life as a stay-at-home mom. Here are the big ones:
- Staying at home, I will have a lot more free time! In reality, I feel busier than ever, yet some days I reflect and feel as if I’ve accomplished nothing at the end of the day. Hence, my suffering blog! With nine extra hours in my day, I’m still not sure how this is possible. I have a hypothesis that creating some sort of schedule will help with this problem. I’ll keep you posted. This delusion coincides with my next one which is…
- Staying at home, I will be able to keep the house neat and tidy every day! Ha!! I forgot to factor in the simple fact that being at work and school for nine hours each day meant that our home was also untouched during all of those hours. Conversely, being at home for that extra time means that there is ample time for dishes to get dirtied, bathrooms, kitchens counters, and the dining table to be used, dog hair to be strewn across the floor and furniture, toys and other miscellaneous items to be brought out, etc. If my son and I aren’t picking up after ourselves constantly throughout the day, the house goes from clean to chaos at unbelievable speeds!
- Staying at home, my son and I will have more bonding experiences! While this is absolutely true, the delusion in this is that I didn’t fully prepare myself for the additional conflicts that we would have. He wants to play video games on a non-video-game-playing-day. He wants to go outside when it’s 105 degrees. He wants to watch cartoons all day instead of playing with toys or with his mommy. The first few weeks were the hardest, as he was adjusting to being at home with mommy and a newborn who needed a lot of attention, instead of being at school where he had friends to play with and no TV or video games to tempt him. We have set some ground rules that I stick to, and with a few compromises, conversations, and timeouts, we are spending the days much more smoothly now. But man, I was unprepared for as many conflicts as we have had while spending the vast majority of our days side-by-side.
There are other challenges of being a stay-at-home that I was ready to face, such as boredom, lack of adult interaction (thank goodness for my husband coming home every night, great friends to chat with on the phone or visit occasionally, and social networks like Facebook and Twitter!), and financial cutbacks. But what is life without challenges? There isn’t a job out there that doesn’t come with a few complaints or challenges, and being a stay-at-home mom proves to be no different. And I wouldn’t trade it for any other job in the world right now.
Share with me some of your stay-at-home mom wisdom! Or some delusions of being a mom in general!