There I was, wiping my three-year-old’s bottom while my six-year-old was yelling for help with his schoolwork that he needed to complete before getting back into his virtual class.
All while the eggs were burning on the stovetop, I was on the brink of a meltdown. This suddenly felt more stressful than any of my moments as a supervisor at a bank.
These last seven months have been a total game changer for me. I went from being the full-time working mom to the full-time stay-at-home mom—like so many others—and the only word I can come up with to describe what this experience has been like thus far is: wow.
I have seriously undermined how difficult it is to stay home with your kids all day every day and have since formed new respect for the women who have mastered this; because let me tell you, my life feels like a full-time sh*t show at the moment. Don’t get me wrong: I am loving the time I am getting with my kiddos, but I am also going a little bit crazy.
I mean, I can’t even pee by myself, ever. I don’t even bother shutting the door anymore because I then risk giving myself a false sense of hope in thinking that this time will be the one time I get to use the bathroom in peace. It never happens, and I have started to come to terms with that, though I would seriously enjoy a trip to the bathroom alone once in a while.
Don’t even get me started on remote learning with my first grader. I swear that the majority of the day is me giving him threatening looks just to keep him focused on his teacher in his virtual class. All the while knowing damn well that if it were me in any meeting that long, I would be bored as hell too. My evil looks are probably more distracting than helpful, but it’s all I can come up with at the moment.
Once school is over, it’s a freaking free for all when Wrestlemania between my boys starts. If we don’t get outside after school, I know that the rest of the night will be a long one consisting of me dreaming about bedtime.
Then there are times that I look at my kids and just admire them and relish in the moment. That is when I feel the luckiest for this opportunity that I have with them and remember that they are also going through this transition. They are used to being with their friends more. They are used to the tight schedule we have followed their entire lives. In those moments, I realize that we are all just doing the best we can. We are getting by together.
Transitioning from working full-time to not having a job at all has been really tough for me in so many ways. I never realized how much of my identity was tied to being the working mom, and I quickly fell into a rut and depression at the beginning of this whole new role that I took on.
I have always had a structured schedule for myself and my kids. They have both been in childcare full-time since they were three months old. This newfound freedom is unknown to all of us. We have had days of doing nothing, days that we did too much, and days that we slept until 11:00 a.m.
I am seven months in now, we are doing much better, but it’s still a little bumpy at times. I have learned that nothing is supposed to be perfect. Each and every day has a learning curve. I also learned that having that much time with them is something that I don’t see myself giving up anytime soon. This journey is definitely a roller-coaster, but it has taught me so much about myself and my children.
I am a firm believer that things happen for a reason. This time with my kids has grounded me and allowed me to give them the time that I was unable to share with them for so long.
Though the days are challenging, I don’t take a single moment for granted. Far too soon, they will be grown up, and these days will just become mere memories I will grasp at.