Remember that time I got all ragey, quit my job and was a stay at home mom for like 17 seconds? When I got a great job offer, I immediately went right back to work. And ever since, I have grappled with the fact that I am “missing” huge chunks of my children’s lives. Am I doing the right thing by working outside the home? Does it make me a crappy mom?
Paying copious amounts of money for daycare for two children, combined with the fact that I know firsthand how quickly Nora’s infancy is going to FLY by, has led me to contemplate (once again) becoming a stay at home mom. What’s the point of going back to work anyway, if I pay out my salary to daycare? Oh, the moments I would cherish, the memories I could relish.
And then yesterday happened.
It made me realize, no amount of cherish…no amount of relish…could make me want to do this 24/7/365. I mean, I LOVE my babies. And they are great and relatively well behaved and smart and amazing. And I love being a mom, and I can actually be pretty good at it. But being a stay at home mom is SO HARD. By 8 am, I was ready for a bottle of liquor and/or a padded room.
So let’s talk about all the reasons why I shouldn’t – or just plan don’t want to – be a full-time, stay at home mom.
10. There is way too much poop involved. So much poop. With 2 kids, I think I was changing a diaper every 20 seconds. Not to mention, because things were so nutso, I forgot to let my dogs out and one of those assholes pooped in the house…and of course I stepped in it. And I had taken out the trash but forgotten to replace the bag, so for about half of the day there was a mound of poop – human and canine – piling up on the counter. At least the bullshit I deal with at work isn’t LITERAL shit.
9. I had to pee, all day. And every time I had a brief second, I would forget I had to go. So I spent all day trying to remind myself to urinate. I was literally so preoccupied that I forgot about my own bodily functions.
8. I didn’t get to shower all day, nor did I change my clothes. Or my children’s clothing. And 2/3 of us were pretty well covered in regurgitated breast milk.
7. I fed my toddler a brownie for lunch. Don’t worry, there was some other stuff in there too. Like, a cheese stick and a sliced up apple and some other… stuff. But the brownie gave me another few minutes during which he was confined to his high chair so I could finally go pee.
6. I contemplated how long it would take for someone to track us down as their owners if I just opened the back door, let the dogs go and exclaimed “BE FREEEEEE!” Have I ever mentioned how becoming a mom made me a crappy dog owner? Troof. My love for my dogs is now a forced love. Or a love that only exists after the children are sleeping and they aren’t annoying the piss out of me.
5. The words “No”, “Mine”, “Mouse”, and “Cheese.” All day. On repeat.
4. It’s hard to entertain a toddler when you have to breastfeed a newborn every two hours. I couldn’t imagine doing this on a regular basis and having to worry about working educational activities and/or exercise into the day. I just literally handed my almost-two-year-old a burp cloth and said, “Be creative.” I don’t think that would work long term.
3. Since Charlie only took a 45-minute afternoon nap, I decided at around 3:30 that we definitely had to play a game of Second Nap. I used the additional hour to catch up on my DVR with the most recent 19 Kids and Counting and thank my lucky stars that I only have 2 – one of which isn’t even mobile. Who in their right mind would have 19 of these things?!
2. At my 9-5 job, I spend lots of time giving people the same instructions over and over. Which can be annoying. But not nearly as annoying as having to say the following phrases a bajillion times a day:
- “Gentle, please!”
- “Don’t pull her tail!”
- “Hot, don’t touch!”
- “Don’t ride the dog!”
- “No climbing please!”
- “We sit on the couch.”
- “She’s going to bite you!”
1. At around 5:45 pm, I shared this summary of my day with my online mom friends: “Charlie just dropped a bowl of popcorn all over the floor. And then Nora projectile vomited all over me. Of course Tristan is usually home by 5:40 but today he left late and got stuck behind some Halloween parade. So now I’m just sitting here covered in vomit watching my toddler eat floor popcorn.” That about sums it all up, in a nutshell.
I love my children, and I love being a mom. It makes me sad to think about missing any part of their childhood because I choose to go to work. But it makes me equally sad to think about missing their lives because I have to be committed to an asylum. Honestly, the craycray of this one day made me realize that working actually makes me a better mom, a better wife, and a better person in general.
Being a mom is the hardest job I’ll ever have… and for me, my 9-5 gives me a little reprieve from that reality. No matter how high pressure or hard my job is, it’s not my life. My children are my life. And to be my best for them I need to be a working mom. For the mental stimulation, adult conversation, and the cash money. I give mad props to all the SAHMs who do it and do it well… I just am not one of you. Nor will I ever be.