Friday. Glorious, heavenly, delicious Friday. It was my first week as a stay-at-home-mom…or a SAHM for those that like to abbrev’ things. I spent the past nine years working in corporate world, doing my adult thing, earning my paycheck, making decisions, managing a team, and dressing in nice clothes that don’t have food plastered to them. Now… now I stay home. Everyday. I thought I would record how my first week went as a SAHM.
I should preface this with the fact that I dreamed of being a SAHM for a year before it actually happened. It was a major decision that took time to consider before moving away from a career I had established for myself. While this post may not be pretty and praising the inner beauty of SAHM life, it doesn’t mean I would change it. It just means it’s hard. Because it is. And I love it. Because I love my kid.
So…here is my
Day 1: Tuesday morning (Labor Day weekend cut this week down by one day, phew!). The son was up from midnight until 4AM with lots of energy and little interest in his crib. My hubs and I split the time so one of us was in bed listening vs. being the one actually attempting to coax him to sleep. We have a little house with wood floors – super cute, yes – but also terrible for noise. When one person is up, we’re all up. This nighttime heyday led to a cranky toddler in the morning, and it was pouring rain so that made things a little sad as well.
He was upset he couldn’t go outside and refused to play on his own, but also didn’t want to be held, read to, or fed anything other than Goldfish. It was a LONG morning. I moved naptime up an hour so we could both get a break from one another. Best/worst decision ever. I pondered how I would get through this day – let alone every single day afterwards – which led to the obvious answer. Call my mom. Mom to the rescue – she came and talked to me for a couple of hours. Just having another adult present in the home was so helpful. When she left, I had a resurgence of energy and confidence that felt something like, “I CAN DO THIS!!! I can do this! I can do this. I can do this? Can I do this? Will my boss give me my job back?”
Day 2: Husband wakes up very ill in the early morning. Grrreeaaatttttt….. I get to handle two people now. He needed to go to the doctor, but couldn’t drive himself, so mother-in-law to the rescue. I’ll be honest – while I felt awful that my hubs was so sick – I did see this as a glimmering little break from the kid for an hour, and for that I was grateful. When we got home, I put my son down for a nap. I also went to rest for a few minutes and had a moment to pause and realize this was my life. I was exhausted. I was in need of a shower. And all at once, I was realizing the reality I had picked for myself. I love my son. I want to spend time with him. But this is a massive change. I’m used to being in meetings all day making decisions, talking with other adults, being clean/showered, only telling people “no” a few times a day vs. the current count of 10 million. I shed some tears. Not necessarily sad or happy – just tears that this is hard. Change is hard.
The afternoon went a tiny bit better – likely given to the one-hour break in the morning. We played outside until the mosquitoes chomped a few bites out of us.
Day 3: It’s Thursday meaning it’s basically Friday meaning this week is totally done. I survived my first week! #realitycheck Thursday is Thursday. This day started out with major energy and positive thoughts that were going to help me make today great. I scored a used tricycle for free from a neighbor so that took up most of the morning. I was basically supermom to my son, and we played outside on that tricycle for a LONG time. It was amazing. Post-nap was a different story. The way to describe it feels similar to that moment in every Disney movie when the storyline starts to go south. The color fades, people start looking sad, the music has a sad/scary Halloween vibe, and you know you are headed for something challenging. We had been home basically all morning so I thought the best solution was to get out of the house. I decided that as a new SAHM I needed to fulfill my duty and sign up for my first library card.
We headed to our local library and talked with the nicest lady who signed us up in three minutes. I secretly wished that process took longer because #adultconversation. My son and I wandered over to the kid books, played with all the toys, and picked out a handful of books to take home. Everything was going great until I saw my son who had “that” look on his face. You know that look. It starts with this look and shortly there after, you get hit with the smell. He chose this perfect moment to completely fill his diaper. No problem, I can handle this, except that this location didn’t have a diaper changing station. I may have started sweating at this point. Anyway, we swiftly left the library sans books and took care of all the things. Day three was a fairly major success in comparison to the previous two days.
Day 4: Friday was the day I had my first play-date and I realized this was how I will stay sane. I met up with two other moms that have boys around the same age. We played at the park with the kids, and when it started raining on us, we hit up a local coffee shop that has a play area for kids and continued to chat for a while longer. It was amazing – and yes, the kids screamed and cried. But it was so much fun. I think I will make a major effort to seek out other moms to get myself out of the house.
That’s the first week. After the happy moments, the crabby moments, and the near-blowout-at-the-library moment, I am so happy to be staying home. And it is a whole lot harder than I anticipated. I’m excited to learn what works best for my son and me as we journey through this together.
What tips or tricks do you have for this new SAHM?