My 3 Hours as a Stay At Home Mom | Ask Your Dad Blog

Wednesday, December 12, 2012

My 3 Hours as a Stay At Home Mom

Hey gang! Dad here. This week's blog post comes from my lovely, wonderful, kind, patient, pretty wife who is definitely not mad at me for leaving the kitchen a complete mess last night. She's been staying at home with the Captain since he was born and today decided to keep the Duchess home from daycare for a fun filled stay at home mom day. Here's what happened: 

Ten years ago, I would have told you that I would NEVER be a stay-at-home mom. You know, because of something to do with Feminism... and because I want to "contribute" to the household like an equal member of society. (Since clearly the only way to contribute is money.) Now, at 25, I still think I will never be a stay-at-home mom but for an entirely different reason: it's hard as shit.





I look at so many of my friends these days and they are all doing it. Not only are they staying at home with their kids, but they have three or even four small humans running around. We have one small human and a glorified, squishy paperweight and I can barely cut it. When I think of the ideal stay-at-home environment with my kids, I picture reading lessons and snowball fights and trips to the aquarium. What I actually get is scenes like this morning where I sat on the couch with the Captain while allowing the Duchess to remove every ornament from our tree and then roll around in them. Don't worry, we can't afford glass ornaments. 

Yes, I thought I'd give it a try today and be a stay-at-home-with-both-my-kids kind of mom. How long did I make it before I packed up the Duchess and toted her off to daycare? Three whole hours. Womp womp.  By 10 A.M. I was completely overwhelmed. The Captain was hungry. The Duchess was needy. She was following me around saying  "Carry you! Carry you!" (which, in Duchess language, means 'carry me' - pronouns aren't her thing, ok?). And I wanted to! But I was carrying the Captain too, and making her breakfast, and trying to find the Captain’s binky which may or may not be in my shirt and he starts to cry and The Duchess starts to cry and I start to cry AND NOW WE'RE ALL CRYING AND NO ONE IS HAPPY AND I JUST WANT TO GO TO THE AQUARIUM AND HAVE FREAKING SNOWBALL FIGHT!!!!!

So I broke down and took the Duchess to daycare. She would have more fun there than spending another minute at Kinnear Cryapalooza 2012.

I feel horrible. The worst part is that the Duchess really likes her new little brother. She REALLY likes him. As in, she wants to hold him and kiss him and lay next to him at all times type of likes him. Like creepy girlfriend but not, because they're siblings and that is weird, and now I'm regretting starting this sentence kind of like him. I really wanted them to have a day together - just not a day of all of us crying together.



The Captain is still in the sleep, eat, poop, I'm-just-a-cute-and-squishy-paperweight stage. But the whole 'eat' part of that equation is still happening every two hours or so. So every two hours, I'm quite literally tethered to the Captain like a dairy cow while simultaneously chasing around the Duchess up and down the hallway calling to get her to put on underwear because that's what we do as civilized people. I'm just going to leave you with that visual. You're welcome.

OK. I am probably blowing this a little out of proportion. I love my kids more than anything in the whole world. I'm sure I would eventually love staying home with my kids, and with hard work and practice I would probably be a damn good SAHM (that's what the cool moms call it). But I can honestly say that it only took me three hours to realize that I've been completely underestimating how difficult it would be. I need to pay my respect to the moms and dads out there who do this every day. It is damn hard work and it is "contributing to society." I just don't know if it is for me. I guess I'm "lucky" that it isn't really a decision we get to make right now. Who knows, maybe someday it will be. Until then... someone needs to eat, and then I've got to go pick up the Duchess from daycare. 

Love, 
Mom (Stevie)

24 comments:

  1. Awesome blog Stevie! As a SAHM I appreciate the acknowlegement that we are contributing to society and our household although we are not out making money! I also love the acknowledgement that being a SAHM "is hard as shit." Some days I wonder if I am the only one that feels that way. Thanks for bringing a smile to my face today!

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    1. I don't know how you do it, Gena. You're just super-mom! We all acknowledge it :)

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  2. I fill out those little "Occupation" boxes with Stay at home Dad. Its 14+ hours a day, pay is pretty slim compared to other jobs, and not a lot of vacation time. And my three employees don't quite understand lunch break yet. The perks are great though; short commute, lax dress code, and you can eat on the clock. Besides the dirty diapers, and the strange looks you sometimes get for being "that guy that doesn't work" its OK.

    I just can't wait until I can go to the bathroom without having a conversation with a little person on the other side of the door.

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    1. Ha! I was thinking that same thing the other day. I took a shower and had the Captain sitting in his little bouncy chair with me. All I kept thinking was "great, another reason I am NEVER going to have any privacy in the bathroom"

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    2. You actually get to close the door? I had never thought of that as a possibility. Maybe just for fun at nap time, to see what it's like....

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  3. Stevie, this is perfect and can I just say THANK YOU? I've done both the working mom thing and the stay at home mom thing. I will tell you this: working is way easier but being a stay at home mom is way more fun. I agree with Peter that the hours suck but the dress code is awesome. It's emotionally difficult either way and guilt is something everyone faces but if you get the opportunity to be a stay at home mom, take it, if only for another 3 hours.

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    1. Thanks lizzo! Yeah the stay-at-home mom thing is definitely more challenging than my 9-5. But I will definitely cherish my days off when I get to hang out the Duchess and the Captain. Just maybe after I'm done being a dairy cow for 12 hours a day :)

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    2. You're not a cow dear. You are a beautiful, life giving milk dispenser. And I love you.

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  4. I'm doing the SAHM thing too. I never knew how hard it would be. There are days that I dream of going to work. I look forward to when they go to school but the work STILL isn't done. There's the cleaning, vacuuming, laundry, dinner, etc. etc....Janice G

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    1. The cleaning I pretty much have down to an art. John gets mad because I'm supposed to "sleep when the baby sleeps" but I choose to clean instead. I could be an awesome stay-at-home mom as long as my kids were in daycare! But I'm not sure that's how it works...

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  5. Way to go Stevie! You're doing great.

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  6. I am now having flashbacks to that phase and find myself going "Thank god my kids are older." It was really hard during the newborn phase because you are exhausted and if nursing, you are literally tethered to your infant for 10 hours a day JUST nursing.

    My son did not love his sister near as much as your daughter loves her brother, especially once she became mobile. Cherish those adorable moments.

    Snowball fights can come next year, but the aquarium I'd try in a few months. My son used to love riding in the Bjorn carrier and looking at fish once he was about 4 months old. So there's hope.

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    1. Maybe once the Captain starts going a little longer between feedings. Right now I feel like Mission: Impossible when I need to go out..

      "Ok...the Captain is fed. This means we have t-minus 2 hours to get showered, pack him up, get my errands run and get back to the house if I want to avoid having to nurse in public. Ready....go!"

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    2. Eh, I used to feel that way too, but then I realized that most of the time, if you're nonchalant about it, nursing in public (with the right kind of easy-access top) is no biggie. Although I imagine it is much harder to be cool and collected when you're also keeping tabs on the toddler.

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    3. Oh it's not at all a matter of me being scared to do it, I did it plenty of times with the Duchess. It's more a matter of just being highly inconvenient :)

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  7. This made me laugh out loud. Couldn't have said it better myself. I will now be shuffling my four and two year old off to daycare while I go to work grudgingly. But don't fret, the weekend always reminds me that if I was a SAHM, I'd belong to the asylum..

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    1. Exactly! There's another justification right there, it makes the weekends that much more enjoyable :)

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  8. Awesome post. Love your sense of humor. :)

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  9. Last century, when my kids were little, I worked days, and my wife worked evenings to minimize the "daycare" time.
    My buds would be over watching me feed the kids, change diapers, etc.. and ask me how I could work and deal with the kids at the same time. My answer was: "Going to work is like going on vacation."

    Keep you chin up Stevie, someday your kids are going to something so wonderful your heart will swell until you think you will suffocate, trust me.

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    1. I know so many couples that have done that and I just don't understand. I would go nuts if I didn't have John around to yell at!

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  10. I am nursing my 6-month old and 2-and-a-half. I could understand every single sentence you wrote. I am glad that I am not alone. Only after we get over this difficult/demanding stage then can we have a moment to think and cherish this time.

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  11. Don't worry, my mom always said that three kids is easier than four, and four is easier than three. That's why she ended up having 8. Eventually we just started to watch ourselves.

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    1. I meant three is easier than two -- two is the hardest!

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