Just quit my job literally 3 hours ago. SAHM job starts Monday. HELP!!!! - Mothering Forums
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#1 of 29 Old 03-31-2011, 10:02 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I've been trying for months to figure out how we could financially afford to have me stay home with the kids instead of putting them into daycare, and the numbers just weren't working out. Fast forward to today where, even though the numbers aren't there 100% yet, due to added job requirements that makes me put my job first and my kids last, I quit. They'll be home with me starting Monday and now I'm terrified that I don't know what to spend my day doing with them. I know I'm probably being overly dramatic being that this is all fresh right now, but seriously, I have two girls, 2.5 and 8 months, and I don't know what my daily schedule should look like or what I should be trying to accomplish in the house, projects for the big one, housework, etc.

 

Anyone have any good resources for a new SAHM or want to share with me what their daily routine is? (PS, I BF my 8 month old and she does 2 mini meals of solids a day... if that factors into the schedule)

 

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#2 of 29 Old 03-31-2011, 11:39 AM
 
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Well I'm kinda new at being a SAHM and I do work freelance sometimes but it still kinda feels like a really long vacation. I do most of the housework now (we used to split) and I also do most of the cooking (my DH used to do dinner). I just try to keep the place running and clean (its a lot more cleaning though since were here and making a mess all day lol). I just go about my day with my kids. We do preschool, projects, errands, that sort of stuff. I do volunteer work and like I mentioned I freelance some as well. I keep pretty busy but enjoy spending most of the day in yoga pants :)


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#3 of 29 Old 03-31-2011, 11:45 AM
 
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Do whatever you normally do on weekends?  

Give yourself some time to get into the swing of being home.  It will probably take a couple weeks to get used to not going to work.  Maybe plan one activity a day (walk to the park, go to the library, make playdough) and then let the rest of the day just happen.  Between making and cleaning up after meals, getting kids dressed, and doing naps, you might find your day goes fairly quickly.


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#4 of 29 Old 03-31-2011, 11:58 AM
 
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I have been a stay at home since my daughters birth - so a lil over 4 years - My DS came along when she was 15 months old. Obvioulsy our routine has changed quite a bit over the years but we are always busy - walks , art projects, library ( we go three times a week ) play time, NAP TIME, play ground , nursery school and play group - I try to have one outing a day just to get out of the house. I have certain cleaning duties i do on certain days but i try really hard not to be a slave to the housework or else i would never leave my house... lol.. i do a load of laundry every day tho first thing in the morning so i am not stuck with massive laundry at the end of the week. I will be honest it isn't all roses and butterflies but it is the BEST job i have ever had :) ENJOY!


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#5 of 29 Old 03-31-2011, 05:15 PM
 
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Congratulations! I left my job when my mat leave with DS was finished because of similar circumstances.

 

You'll find the days go very fast most days (except when there are tantrums involved!). My older DD is older than yours and is in Kindergarten in the mornings, so we tend to either run errands in the morning when she's at school or I stay home with DS and try to shower / clean up a little (hah!) / bathe him and then when DD comes home we have lunch, she has quiet time while I try to get DS to nap, then snack and I try to start dinner early.

 

My one big learning is to start making dinner as early as possible, because if you start too late, everyone's cranky, the baby's crying, you start sweating, and DP comes in the door when you're at your most harried. Not a good scene. Make ahead!

 

One of the big things is that you are NOT going to feel like you've accomplished much at first. At work, you have lots of little tasks you can check off, and feel like you've got somewhere. Looking after children, it doesn't work quite that way, and you can feel like you've wasted the day. You need to look at it like a day-care provider - their job is to feed, care for, and interact with the children. Not accomplish a whole bunch of other stuff too. We pay them to do that - don't expect more of yourself, especially to start with.

 

Because your older DD will be home full-time and you will probably want to do some craft, it can be worth finding a blog etc that gives you some hints - makes it easier. This is one of my favourites: http://www.notimeforflashcards.com/. But don't feel you HAVE to do a craft etc every day. That is a lot of pressure! Walks, parks, playgroup if you can? Maybe plan out a day to do one special thing?

 

It has taken me quite a while to get into the swing of things, and some days it doesn't go so well, but it is getting easier, and I'm finding ways to get things done with a very active little guy underfoot (high chair and finger foods - yay!).

 

 


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#6 of 29 Old 03-31-2011, 06:24 PM
 
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Congratulations on making the big leap... after a few weeks you'll be into the swing of it and probably love it!

A few tips I learned when #2 came along last year...

Feed both kids at the same time. Either by giving the baby a spoon-fed meal while the older child feeds herself or by BFing at the table while your older child eats. If you try to feed them each individually, you'll feel like you're spending the whole day making food, feeding, or cleaning up.

Consider letting the baby take one nap in the stroller while you take a walk. The older child will probably love the outing (especially as the weather gets nicer) and the baby can still get a good nap in.

Make dinner early in the day! Someone else suggested this and it's great. All kids get fussy late in the day when they are tired of their toys and generally tired so it's a bad time to try to get a little quiet to cook. If you can't sync the kids' nap schedules, you could put the baby in a highchair with some toys and try to prep dinner while the older is sleeping.

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#7 of 29 Old 03-31-2011, 09:18 PM
 
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Originally Posted by weliveintheforest View Post

Do whatever you normally do on weekends?  

Give yourself some time to get into the swing of being home.  It will probably take a couple weeks to get used to not going to work.  Maybe plan one activity a day (walk to the park, go to the library, make playdough) and then let the rest of the day just happen.  Between making and cleaning up after meals, getting kids dressed, and doing naps, you might find your day goes fairly quickly.

 

Yep.  You'll get the hang of it I'm sure and if not, post here again with what you need help with.  Congrats! 
 

 

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#8 of 29 Old 03-31-2011, 09:38 PM
 
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Look for some free or inexpensive things in your area and see what days they are on.  I just moved, so I had to set this all up again...

 

Library, parks, zoo, mall play areas.  

 

Congrats and I hope you love it as much as I do!!!


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#9 of 29 Old 04-02-2011, 11:54 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Thank you all so much for the tips. I think the dinner thing is a great idea and yes, I've experienced the problem of starting it late before so it was a great reminder for me.

 

On weekends we're usually driving all over the place running errands and getting house work done, so I don't think that's a great idea to copy that schedule because now I'll be able to get that stuff done through the week and on weekends my husband will actually get to enjoy his down time a little more - and so will I.

 

Keep the ideas coming, I'm so appreciative of them!


Heather (40) DH (41) Georgia Mae b. 9/3/08, Charlotte Grace 7/17/10.
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#10 of 29 Old 04-02-2011, 12:17 PM
 
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I joined a moms club. It helped me locate other SAHMs for playmates, socializing, etc. That REALLY helped me because before all my friends came from work. We stayed friends but they weren't available to hang out during the day. Moms club international, meet up.com, attachment parenting international groups, la leche league - lots of groups out there.
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#11 of 29 Old 04-02-2011, 12:18 PM
 
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Meet up.com - the meet and up were not supposed to have a space, but my iPad will NOT let me type it without one.

Never doubt that a small group of committed, thoughtful people can change the world. Indeed, it is the only thing that ever has. Margaret Mead
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#12 of 29 Old 04-03-2011, 06:18 PM
 
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My only advice is spend as much time with your kiddos as possible and less time doing chores.  A wise woman once told me that I will have much of my life to have a clean home and such a short time with my little ones. Live up this time with your babies and make great memories.


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#13 of 29 Old 04-03-2011, 08:28 PM
 
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I agree. I was just looking back over some photos of when DD and I were home together (she's now 8). There was so much joy heartbeat.gif in all of the activities,crafts and outings in the pics. I was thinking at the time that our home was messy, but it was just fine. What means the most are the beautiful times that you have together. Not an immaculate home.
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My only advice is spend as much time with your kiddos as possible and less time doing chores.  A wise woman once told me that I will have much of my life to have a clean home and such a short time with my little ones. Live up this time with your babies and make great memories.



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#14 of 29 Old 04-03-2011, 09:11 PM
 
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omg! I'm in almost the same situaiton-- tomorrow's my first day solo -- no nanny-- with the two kids.

 

I spent two hours planning with dh, with written routine, and just prepared all the food, and will be getting to bed in a few minutes! wishing us both luck!


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#15 of 29 Old 04-04-2011, 09:51 AM
 
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Congratulations on making it happen!

Mine are 4 and 6 now, and it's definitely a juggling act with an 8 month old and a 2.5 year old.... but I can safely say you'll never be bored!

My only structure to the day at that point was getting out of the house each day for something, whether an errand/shopping or a fun kid outing, like playground, library, children's museum (we have a membership), etc.  And I'd time it so the baby can take a nap on the way home (whether in car or stroller) or get home before the nap.  Then for the afternoon, there's lunch, home projects, resting, playing, maybe a nap for the kid/s in there somewhere if you're lucky, and a sudden downturn at 5:00pm that means the older one must be fed quickly!  Somehow it always took me by surprise how he'd fall apart at 5.  After dinner there was (and is) often a "creative burst" where some quiet or creative activity or pretend game would grab them a good while, then we'd get into the bedtime routine.

 

Stuff to have around for the 2yo -  playdough and cutters and tools, crayons and paper (and/or magnadoodle), new books from the library on hand, different puzzles, little building toys - maybe a Mr. Potato Head, blocks, big legos, .  You probably already have this stuff, but during the day it's good to remember to bring something out to play with when moods are getting low....

And putting on some new or familiar music can do wonders too.

Have fun!

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#16 of 29 Old 04-06-2011, 01:04 PM
 
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I would take a vacation week to start. Stay in your pjs til noon or all day, head to the park, go to a cafe for lunch, just have a leisurely time without an agenda.

The week after that you can start thinking about routines And activities.

Mom to Kira March 2009
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#17 of 29 Old 04-06-2011, 05:37 PM
 
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I would take a vacation week to start. Stay in your pjs til noon or all day, head to the park, go to a cafe for lunch, just have a leisurely time without an agenda.

The week after that you can start thinking about routines And activities.


 I really agree with this. Not only will you get to relax a little, you can use the time to get to know what kind of schedule your kids need. What time you need to plan a nap, when doing a little prep here and a little prep there for dinner works in, snack times etc. I found that DD and I just kind of fell into a schedule/routine when we didn't have any expectations. Then, once we were more used to staying home together, we added in scheduled activities like storytime at the library or play dates. Also, once we had our rhythm going, it was easier to plan errands around when she needed her downtime.

 

Also, pick up whenever you can. Do things like clean up a messy high chair right away so it only takes a few seconds, instead of waiting until the next meal time and spend five minutes scrubbing off the stuck on cheese. When you go from one room to another, grab that stack of book and put them away real fast or put move displaced toys from your room back into the living room. Its little things like that that help me keep my sanity. As long as I keep up on that, cleaning doesn't become overwhelming. Do I always manage to keep up with that? Heavens, no!

 

Be easy on yourself. A PP said it won't seem like you get much done and that's true. There are still days where it seems like I do nothing be clean, feed, clean, clean, feed, clean, feed, clean and nothing is done. It happens. You aren't perfect and that's a-ok!

 

Most of all, relax and go with the flow. Kids are unpredictable sometimes!! Routines change, nap times change, sick days come up, crabby tantrums-all-day-long happen. The ability to adjust and go with things without getting stressed out is a huge assest!

 

Oh, and remember to not get caught up in housework. The house will be there to clean for many many years. Our little ones are only so little for so long.

 

Good luck, mama! You'll do great!!


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#18 of 29 Old 04-06-2011, 06:00 PM
 
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Have you heard the term "de-schooling"? Well I did what you did in January and I am still "de-working".  I think it is really important to keep your expectations and ambitions low. You might need to completely let go of the scheduling and the rushing around.  As another poster said-stay in your jammies all day, snuggle and read.  

 

You need to also prepare yourself that this is not only a huge change for you but a huge change for your kids too. Your oldest may go with the flow and be fine.  But she might also react to the sudden change in schedule.  She might be cranky and irritable and not have the words to say she misses the routine, her friends and her caregivers. Depending on the kid a clean break might be good but others a short term transition might be in order.  It is important you let her say goodbye. 

 

And make sure you and husband are on the same page.  Have you guys talked about *his* expectations?  The biggest complaint I see on this board is "my H expect me to do EVERYTHING", "He expects the house clean, the laundry and shopping done, dinner on the table, that I do everything related to the house and kids because I don't "work"!!"

 

Good luck and have fun!! Best decision we ever made.


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#19 of 29 Old 04-06-2011, 06:35 PM
 
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A dear friend who went SAH before I did gave me a wonderful piece of advice:

 

GIVE IT A YEAR.

 

It's a big adjustment for you. It's a big adjustment for your kids. It's a big adjustment for your husband. Figuring it all out takes some time.


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#20 of 29 Old 04-07-2011, 11:28 AM
 
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Oh, yeah, my DD is still having trouble adjusting to the fact that I'm staying home and she's not going back to daycare! I'm assuming that is a good sign that she was in a quality home daycare.


Perdita - newly SAHM to DD July/05 & DS Feb/10 joy.gif
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#21 of 29 Old 04-13-2011, 01:56 PM - Thread Starter
 
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UPDATE - IT AIN'T PRETTY: Well, it's been a week and a half, and since I'm pretty much anonymous here I'll be honest: I wasn't cut out for this.

 

I've always said even before kids that I didn't think I'd be able to be a SAHM and the past 10 days have shown me that I was pretty in tune with who I was before the kids got here. I have no idea how you all do it without going completely insane. I'm not kidding. Unfortunately I'm a Type A personality with ADD and I overwhelm easily. I also have less patience than my toddler. So when I have days where I get literally not a single minute to myself - in which I usually spend that time doing something for the greater good of everyone else - I get very, very depressed and frustrated. I have a toddler who won't listen to one single thing I ask her to do - who also has self-inflicted encopresis/holds her stool and that in and of itself is enough to drive a sane person to the edge. Then I have and almost 9 month old who cries just at the sight of me standing, as if I'm abandoning her for the rest of her life, when all I want to do is use the bathroom. We all cosleep as well, with my toddler in her own bed in our room and the baby snuggled right up against me. The nights where I fall asleep putting them to bed drive me wild because another 24hrs has passed where I haven't had one single solitary minute alone. Sometimes if I wake up in the middle of the night to use the bathroom I'll stay up for 2 hours (or until I hear the baby cry) just to be alone, and still, most of that time is spent either researching my toddlers bathroom issues, making grocery lists and Googling coupons, of loading the dishwasher at 2am.

 

I'm not a selfish person at all, otherwise I'd use the teensy bit of two-hands-free time for myself, which I never, ever do - I'm always doing something for my family. Hell, I feel guilty just putting on a TV show I want to watch when my kids are awake - and even THEN it's something like Dr. Oz who has something about supplements on his show that day that I'm interested in, for the betterment of my entire family... it's not even some stupid mindless fluff show. But if I don't have anything left to give because my own reserves have all been depleted, then what? I've been burnt out for SOOOO long now that I don't even know how to replenish myself. My toddler goes to daycare once a week for an enrichment program and this Friday (the day she goes), my inlaws - who live an hour away - are going to watch the baby... all so I can clean my house and go food shopping, because it looks like someone ransacked this place and there isn't a damn thing to eat. Once can only do breakfast for dinner so many times in one week on a kitchen table that is stacked 2 feet high on one end with laundry, a sewing machine that hasn't been used in 2 months, some canned goods that I have no room for, piles of unopened mail, and an array of other things that have gone missing for weeks at a time.

 

What I'm wondering is this: am I sooo much different from all other women to feel this way? All I read or hear from other women who are SAHM's is that they just grin and bear it. All I ever hear is "it goes so fast, enjoy it". All I ever hear is "they're only little for such a short time". All I ever hear is, "you'll find your groove and it'll become second nature, but give it months and months to really start working out". I never hear about women doing anything for themselves, I never hear about the hard times or anything even remotely close to what I've posted here. I simply hear, "Well, that's just how it is" and they just live their lives this way day in and day out, without a complaint to be heard. I am not one of those women. I'm not that good. Maybe I'm "broken" or something to feel this way, I don't know. All I do know is that I just don't know how I'm going to make this work not only for me, but for my kids, without completely losing myself, the cleanliness/order of my home, and my grasp on reality of what happens in the real world while I'm busy just struggling along.

 

I love my kids, I'd die for them. I look at them and I tear up just wondering how I got so lucky... but when I can't even manage a shower but once every 5 days, or, I can't even open the mail, something has got to give.

 

Sorry for what seems like a pity party... I just know my limitations and I know there HAS TO be someone else who feels the same way I do... Maybe you all live this way. I just simply don't know how.


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#22 of 29 Old 04-13-2011, 02:52 PM
 
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It sounds like you need a much needed break between the transition of work to home. Working wasn't exactly vacation and neither is staying home. Do you think you could manage in some free time for yourself, like you have planned for this week except not running errands but time for you?

 

I'm not one of those women who make SAHMing look easy and I personally don't find it easy. But I've chosen to SAHM while they are babies and then money requirements send me out to find a job....that might be happening soon. But I also have found that around 1.5 yrs of staying home I get much more eager to get out and work because I crash. Most of the advice I hear for SAHM's is to get out or have time for yourself. But honestly for me most of the suggestions require money and that is something we do not have extra of when I'm not working. I would love to go to the gym/yoga class and use a gym childcare, just not going to happen. I really think the key to long term happy SAHM is to make sure you do have time to decompress. I can't tell you how you can fit it in. Currenlty I'm in that slump right now and hoping summer and good weather will snap me out of it and get ds and I out of the house a bit more.

 

But I think having a support group of other moms/parents/friends is ideal and getting out of the house regularly even to the park or out for a walk is helpful. Can you take a needed break over the weekend?

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#23 of 29 Old 04-13-2011, 02:55 PM
 
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Can I ask why if you never thought you could do it why did you do it so abruptly and didn't do a tril run?


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#24 of 29 Old 04-13-2011, 03:16 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Can I ask why if you never thought you could do it why did you do it so abruptly and didn't do a tril run?



There was no opportunity to do so. The work thing is too long of a story to get into, but in short, I was forced btwn either working and not being able to take off for sick days/personal days to care for my sick kids (and very sick self) or quit. I was told love it or leave it. so I left it. I don't have any help at all, and I mean at all - my inlaws are the closest help to me and they're in their 70's and are an hour away. I had no one to watch my kids when sick because my DH had already taken 10 days of vacation time to care for them while I worked. I would never send them to daycare when sick (as unfortunately many do) so I had to make a choice. Now I can't afford to work and send my kids to daycare because I made so much before and I'll make only what I need to pay for daycare if I go back to work, and so, now I stay home... at least until my DH finds something paying more money.

 

Honestly, I also have to admit that I have friends who swore up and down they'd never be able to do it either and they are thriving. I thought that, while I love being a parent, that the running ahouse thing would come eventually... but I'm finding it impossible to run and house AND parent at the same time.

 

Is it their ages? Is that why I'm finding it impossible to get anything done or find any time for myself?? I've never had one person tell me they have my experience. They're all able to find help, get out of the house, hire help, clean themselves, etc...... are they lying?


Heather (40) DH (41) Georgia Mae b. 9/3/08, Charlotte Grace 7/17/10.
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#25 of 29 Old 04-13-2011, 04:08 PM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by beebalmmama View Post

It sounds like you need a much needed break between the transition of work to home. Working wasn't exactly vacation and neither is staying home. Do you think you could manage in some free time for yourself, like you have planned for this week except not running errands but time for you?

 

I'm not one of those women who make SAHMing look easy and I personally don't find it easy. But I've chosen to SAHM while they are babies and then money requirements send me out to find a job....that might be happening soon. But I also have found that around 1.5 yrs of staying home I get much more eager to get out and work because I crash. Most of the advice I hear for SAHM's is to get out or have time for yourself. But honestly for me most of the suggestions require money and that is something we do not have extra of when I'm not working. I would love to go to the gym/yoga class and use a gym childcare, just not going to happen. I really think the key to long term happy SAHM is to make sure you do have time to decompress. I can't tell you how you can fit it in. Currenlty I'm in that slump right now and hoping summer and good weather will snap me out of it and get ds and I out of the house a bit more.

 

But I think having a support group of other moms/parents/friends is ideal and getting out of the house regularly even to the park or out for a walk is helpful. Can you take a needed break over the weekend?



Thank you so much for your honesty. I might be dramatising my situation a bit because I'm in the middle of the storm and feeling passionately about everything, but at least I'm honest, which is all I'm asking for. I think a big part of my problem is that I feel guilty taking time for myself when I know there is SO much needing to be done. I don't know how to just let a mess be a mess. I don't know how to be ok with there not being any food in the house. I don't know how to do anything without everything else being finished... and we all know that it's never "finished" and that thinking has just set me up for failure right from the start. But I don't know how to let go. How to do it differently. How to just relax about it all. Maybe if I could, I'd be able to take a few hours and just drive.

 

I think a part of me also feels like a failure because at least when I worked, I felt like I had an identity, and now I don't. I have NEVER thought SAHM's were anything less than Gods in my eyes, so I'm not sure why I think so little of myself now that I am one.

 

I've checked on momsclub.com (not sure if that's the exact url but someone here posted it) and there are no groups in my area. I did make a friend at the park and we have a play date tomorrow, my very first one. I'm hoping she can share some of her knowledge & experience with me.

 

Thank you to those who replied. I guess with no support group of my own to fall back on or ask these things of, I just feel like a lone soldier out here struggling to make it through...


Heather (40) DH (41) Georgia Mae b. 9/3/08, Charlotte Grace 7/17/10.
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#26 of 29 Old 04-13-2011, 04:33 PM
 
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I can understand completely. Mine are a bit farther apart in age (2.5 and 1mo) but coming from a breadwinning career to looking after kids is a heck of a mindfudge. Like you I don't have much of a support network (the only family members that are reasonably close work full time and so do our friends) and like you I get completely demoralized when yet another day has gone by with "nothing" accomplished.

 

What's helped the most for me is a colossal reset of expectations. It's not about what I accomplish (or, more often, don't) in a day; it's about who I am for my kids. I don't want them to grow up with memories of me being stressed out and grumpy because things weren't clean, etc. They're not at the age where they place value on cleanliness. I want them to grow up knowing that I showed them love and affection every day. If that means the dishes get left, so be it.

 

One other thing that really helped was to go minimalist and get serious about it. I had to do it for the size of the place we're in, but I'd do it again even if the place was twice the size. Less stuff = less to clean, less to organize, less to worry about in general.

 

For cooking, I try to get some prep work done for many meals that I can freeze and use at a moment's notice. So I'll fry up a bunch of ground beef with veggies and freeze that in two-cup portions. Then I can just toss it in with some sauce and boil some pasta and bam - instameal. Also less dishes since I didn't have to fry up the beef and cut up the veggies at the time.

 

Don't get me wrong - there are days where I feel like the world's against me and they happen way more often than I'd like. But on the whole, the routine is improving and I think I can do it. You only gave yourself (and your kids!) a week, and no lead-time at that. That's like tossing yourself into a board presentation without having prepared your speech or told your team what to expect. I don't think it's any wonder you're feeling defeated at the moment, and I also don't think you can say you're not cut out for it yet. Keep trying, come back in a couple of weeks and I think you'll have made some routine changes that are working. 

 

My current mantra is that it's about the journey not the destination. I'm struggling with that every day but I'm trying.
 

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Meet up.com - the meet and up were not supposed to have a space, but my iPad will NOT let me type it without one.


 

When the correction comes up, hit the "x" at the end of the suggested text before typing a space in. The correction won't happen then.


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#27 of 29 Old 04-13-2011, 08:09 PM
 
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You gotta give yourself some slack mama. I'm still getting used to this and it's been quite awhile! 

I think everyone has days where they want to throw the kids out the window (that's why they come so cute!) and so being thrown into this with everything you've described about yourself and your kids ages I think would be very very hard for a lot of folks. It's not easy, it really isn't. 

I agree with readjusting expectations. I have new moms who like to accomplish stuff (I work with a lot of 35-40+ moms who've had a career for a long time) write lists of things they'd like to check off it realize that they are actually doing something all day. So write down, get out of bed, get me dressed, get kids dressed, eat breakfast.. seriously. Your doing a lot of stuff. Also, now your home all day, so there is a lot more mess! It's ok! If it really is something you cannot handle look into FlyLady or a list/program to help to get a handle on specific things to do cleaning wise. 

I like the flylady cleaning in 15 minutes. JUST 15 minutes. Seriously, just 15 and then stop. :) 

You might think about putting your littlest in a carrier on your back to get things done, that'll help if it works!

 

So today was typical. We woke up (both kids in bed with me) and my oldest immediately started in on annoying the heck out of me. He's well meaning but that kid is really frustrating. So we rushed around and got ready, took him to preschool and ended up staying to help out (yay adult conversation for 2 hours!) and then for some reason I decided I'd like to go out somewhere to eat because I had a little extra cash in my pocket today. My oldest made me regret that in about 10 minutes! There are folks there on their lunch break eating quietly and I've got a kid rolling around on the floor. So we get home and it takes me an hour (I'm not nagging for an hour, I just ask and he keeps declining) to get him to help me pick up 3 shirts off the floor and take one thing to the sink. He could play a game on the Wii after he helped. So I get the baby to sleep and the oldest is downstairs playing a game and ahhh I have a moment to myself. I've got the baby in a carrier, so not really but he's asleep! My oldest during this time makes a HUGE mess. Like takes down the blinds, draws on the window sill with sharpie and dumps half of his 300+ legos on the floor. About the time we get that under control it's time to make dinner and my DH walks though the door.

 

 


Jessica, wife to Greg since 7/04, mama to the rainbow1284.gif Gman 7/06, 3 brokenheart.gif , rainbow1284.gif Asher 1/11 and a wonderful surprise due in August!

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#28 of 29 Old 04-14-2011, 04:05 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I can understand completely. Mine are a bit farther apart in age (2.5 and 1mo) but coming from a breadwinning career to looking after kids is a heck of a mindfudge. Like you I don't have much of a support network (the only family members that are reasonably close work full time and so do our friends) and like you I get completely demoralized when yet another day has gone by with "nothing" accomplished.

 

What's helped the most for me is a colossal reset of expectations. It's not about what I accomplish (or, more often, don't) in a day; it's about who I am for my kids. I don't want them to grow up with memories of me being stressed out and grumpy because things weren't clean, etc. They're not at the age where they place value on cleanliness. I want them to grow up knowing that I showed them love and affection every day. If that means the dishes get left, so be it.

 

One other thing that really helped was to go minimalist and get serious about it. I had to do it for the size of the place we're in, but I'd do it again even if the place was twice the size. Less stuff = less to clean, less to organize, less to worry about in general.

 

For cooking, I try to get some prep work done for many meals that I can freeze and use at a moment's notice. So I'll fry up a bunch of ground beef with veggies and freeze that in two-cup portions. Then I can just toss it in with some sauce and boil some pasta and bam - instameal. Also less dishes since I didn't have to fry up the beef and cut up the veggies at the time.

 

Don't get me wrong - there are days where I feel like the world's against me and they happen way more often than I'd like. But on the whole, the routine is improving and I think I can do it. You only gave yourself (and your kids!) a week, and no lead-time at that. That's like tossing yourself into a board presentation without having prepared your speech or told your team what to expect. I don't think it's any wonder you're feeling defeated at the moment, and I also don't think you can say you're not cut out for it yet. Keep trying, come back in a couple of weeks and I think you'll have made some routine changes that are working. 

 

My current mantra is that it's about the journey not the destination. I'm struggling with that every day but I'm trying.
 


 

When the correction comes up, hit the "x" at the end of the suggested text before typing a space in. The correction won't happen then.


Thank you, thank you, thank you! You get it, you get exactly what I'm saying, and you really did shed some light on things for me as well. Yes, I'm used to being the bread winner (not kidding, made more than DH did) and now to go from doing something where I had deadlines and achievements that were visible on paper to just basically doing what feels like existing and doing little else, it's a huge adjustment for me. As for the minimalist idea, I've been desperately trying to implement that in our home and in my life for the past year or more. Hard to do when you have a DH who is a pack rat where everything has a purpose and a meaning, even the junk that he hasn't seen in years. We're getting there though, much better now than before, but you're exactly right - less stuff is less to clean & worry about. My biggest issue right now is that there's no place to put our stuff because the places we have to put stuff in are filled with stuff we never use. I've done as much as possible to purge my own things, now I just have to take the reigns and purge DH's since he simply won't do it. If I had a place to put everything, then half of my issues would be gone. Of course after purging toys y'day my toddler wanted to play with a few things that I'd already sent out in bags to the garage - things she hasn't touched in a few months, too. Murphys Law I tell ya.

 

Your example of going into a meeting unprepared was beautiful. I guess I just needed that type of analogy to understand exactly what I've gotten myself into. And yes, now I can see that I'm not giving myself enough time to get into the game and find my rhythm. I do need to be easier on myself and I do need to change my expectations as well.

 

I also went on meetup.com and found a bunch of groups in my area... THANK YOU!!!

 

I can't thank you enough for your message. I really can't. You have no idea what its done for me.... xoxoxo

 


Heather (40) DH (41) Georgia Mae b. 9/3/08, Charlotte Grace 7/17/10.
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#29 of 29 Old 04-14-2011, 04:06 AM - Thread Starter
 
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Originally Posted by jessica_s View Post

You gotta give yourself some slack mama. I'm still getting used to this and it's been quite awhile! 

I think everyone has days where they want to throw the kids out the window (that's why they come so cute!) and so being thrown into this with everything you've described about yourself and your kids ages I think would be very very hard for a lot of folks. It's not easy, it really isn't. 

I agree with readjusting expectations. I have new moms who like to accomplish stuff (I work with a lot of 35-40+ moms who've had a career for a long time) write lists of things they'd like to check off it realize that they are actually doing something all day. So write down, get out of bed, get me dressed, get kids dressed, eat breakfast.. seriously. Your doing a lot of stuff. Also, now your home all day, so there is a lot more mess! It's ok! If it really is something you cannot handle look into FlyLady or a list/program to help to get a handle on specific things to do cleaning wise. 

I like the flylady cleaning in 15 minutes. JUST 15 minutes. Seriously, just 15 and then stop. :) 

You might think about putting your littlest in a carrier on your back to get things done, that'll help if it works!

 

So today was typical. We woke up (both kids in bed with me) and my oldest immediately started in on annoying the heck out of me. He's well meaning but that kid is really frustrating. So we rushed around and got ready, took him to preschool and ended up staying to help out (yay adult conversation for 2 hours!) and then for some reason I decided I'd like to go out somewhere to eat because I had a little extra cash in my pocket today. My oldest made me regret that in about 10 minutes! There are folks there on their lunch break eating quietly and I've got a kid rolling around on the floor. So we get home and it takes me an hour (I'm not nagging for an hour, I just ask and he keeps declining) to get him to help me pick up 3 shirts off the floor and take one thing to the sink. He could play a game on the Wii after he helped. So I get the baby to sleep and the oldest is downstairs playing a game and ahhh I have a moment to myself. I've got the baby in a carrier, so not really but he's asleep! My oldest during this time makes a HUGE mess. Like takes down the blinds, draws on the window sill with sharpie and dumps half of his 300+ legos on the floor. About the time we get that under control it's time to make dinner and my DH walks though the door.

 

 

 

 

Thank you SO MUCH for the description of your average day - it has SO helped me see that I'm not alone in how many of my days have gone. And yes, I do need to make a list of realistic tasks and just try to attempt to do those instead of what I'm currently trying to achieve. Thank you SO much, seriously!
 

 


Heather (40) DH (41) Georgia Mae b. 9/3/08, Charlotte Grace 7/17/10.
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