I spent the last week being a full time stay at home mom (SAHM) because I had a week of vacation time away from work.
It was a staycation because I didn’t actually take a trip anywhere.
It was a much-needed break from external responsibilities.
Sure, I was a full time SAHM for the first 9 weeks of my baby’s life when I was on maternity leave, but that was pretty much just 9 weeks of high-level exhaustion.
Then, she was a newborn: fresh out the womb, needing me to watch her 24/7, clinging to me for nourishment and comfort, keeping me in a cycle of feed, change, console to sleep, every 3 hours. I didn’t have much time to eat. I could barely think. I was basically a highly-functioning zombie mom.
Now, she is practically a premature toddler; getting into everything, showing her personality more-including a bit of sass (yes, already!), following me everywhere, yet also declaring her independence. It’s so much fun watching her learn and grow…yet it’s also tiring.
I used to think that I wanted to be a full time SAHM, but this week has shown me that it’s much harder than I thought.
My job, though it can be extremely busy and grueling at times, is a healthy break from momming. I can go to work, take off my Mom hat and put on my nurse hat. Then, when I leave work, I switch back.
Sometimes the only break I get is my car ride in between locations. I realized this week that SAHM don’t even get that. (Until their kids are school-age; then, I imagine, it becomes a lot more fun.)
Don’t get me wrong, I love love LOVE my daughter and everything about her. I absolutely adore her! She makes my life so much brighter. I wouldn’t change a thing at all. I just want to shed light on the real things that moms experience for those who may not have an accurate picture, and to show other moms that they’re not alone.
In many cases, it is the Mom that does the primary child-raising.
Of course, in two-parent homes, the Dad/other partner also raises the child(ren).
However, Moms are always on the frontline, watching, bathing, cooking for, feeding, changing, transporting, laundering for, healing, protecting, etc. around the clock.
Our job never stops. Not even during the night when we’re supposed to be sound asleep, but the child has a need for something (even if it’s just attention).
So SAHM, I salute you.
You are doing a PHENOMENAL job!
The evenings you stop for fast food on the way home from soccer practice instead of making a home-cooked meal because you are just beat.
The days when you take 5 minutes to yourself in the bathroom with the door closed because that’s the only “me time” you get.
The days when you let your kids eat goldfish for breakfast because you haven’t gone grocery shopping yet, or because thats simply what they want and you don’t feel like fighting it, whether it’s nutritious or not.
The times when you mistakenly (or not) go a few days without showering because you’re just so busy there’s no time- or when there finally is time, you’d rather get some well-deserved sleep instead.
In case you don’t hear it enough:
You are AMAZING!
You are LOVED!
You CAN do this!
Keep doing what you’re doing, because you are doing it wonderfully, and your kids appreciate you.
P.S. important note: the same goes for stay at home Dads; the roles are different for each family!