Have you ever wondered why someone stays home with their kids? Or why they don't? It's a role that is extremely hard to define and often creates tension between couples. Truly, it wasn't something that I ever imagined myself doing. It was something that logistically just made sense when we found out we were having twins. In fact, I don't even really remember a specific conversation about it... Sean and I just knew that it would be the best for us at that moment in time. My days are jam packed with diaper changes, snack prepping and constant cleanup. I feel like a traveling circus when we go places during the day - my brain is running 1,000,000 MPH and always thinking ahead of what's next. So... What does a SAHM (who runs her own business) do all day?
Here's Hank driving his snowplow on me.
H&L wakeup between 5:30a and 6:30a every day. They come into our room and lay in bed for a few minutes until they have had enough. (The sky's awake, so I'm awake - Anna from Frozen). Then we head into our bathroom where we keep extra toothbrushes for them, they dance around and we threaten to take them away if they keep goofing around with the toothbrushes in their mouth. They beg us for more toothpaste and we say no. They beg us for more water on their toothbrush and we say yes, just this time. After brushing we ask them a handful of times to grab their dogs and their nuks. Once we are wrangled and headed towards the stairs they start whining for me to pick them up, god forbid they walk down the stairs... Even though they have been waltzing around the upstairs and jumping on pillows for the past 20 minutes. I manage to pick one up and encourage the other to grab onto my neck tightly so we can get down the stairs. The boys get themselves settled on to the couch and start jibber jabbering about what show they want to watch. We debate between Stinky and Dirty and Llama Llama... They know better than to ask for Blippi this early in the morning. I get the show on and head to the coffee pot with hopes that I set the timer to get the brew going. (It's only about a 50/50 chance that I did!) I scramble to get the coffee going, pour their milk and get some cheerios for them. I snuggle on the couch for a few minutes and then get us organized for the day: snacks packed, clothes set out, kitchen picked up, breakfast made, etc. Typically I give them a few warnings before I shut the TV off or turn on The Today Show for approximately 2 1/2 minutes, because otherwise there will be a meltdown. We eat breakfast around 8am and then we get ready to go to one of three places: school, ECFE or the gym. Often, Hank will take a shit after I get him dressed and we are headed out the door. We head back in, he's angry that I'm changing him again and I'm angry that I'm changing him again. It's really fun. If I remember anything in the morning, it's a snack for the ride home from the morning's activity. Sometimes, I even pack extra snacks and they basically eat enough for lunch - that way we can head straight up for naps when we get home!!!! (insert evil laugh!) Nap time is sacred.
Hey Louie, why don't you play with your lunch???
SHOWER. EAT. CAFFEINATE. WORK. CLEAN. LAUNDRY.
Whoever wakes up from their nap first is lucky. They get to snuggle with me on the couch while watching a show and probably having a little treat. (Because let's be honest, I like to eat cookies too!) Then, we wait for the other little man to wake up before we have a snack. It's all a juggling act, what can I do while they are either sleeping or eating or at school. After snack is the time of day where I will bring the boys outside to play, or we will head down to the bounce house in the basement. Meanwhile, I'm counting down the minutes until Sean gets home and I can start prepping dinner. Let's talk about dinner here for a second, it's either peaceful or painful. Taco Tuesday and Pizza Friday tend to be the peaceful days - the other days of the week are a crapshoot. We laugh with the boys about how silly they are, we scold the boys for playing with their food and then we clean them all up. Sean will chase the boys around after dinner and I clean up the kitchen. Truly, it's a nice trade off at that point because I need a little break from them before bedtime. The boys like to play "Bear" because one of their favorite books right now is "We're Going On A Bear Hunt". They also run around the kitchen super fast like cheetahs. Around 6p we head upstairs for their bath, to play with their tool benches and to build "houses" of throw pillows and blankets. Getting them to stop playing is tough! They are so wild! We fight to get their diapers changed. We fight to get their pajamas on. We fight to get them to sit on the couch to read.
I'll give it to Hank, he has the modeling down.
Being a stay at home mom is a unique and challenging role. I think it creates tension in relationships, causes resentment between spouses and can be extremely isolating. I also think that it creates a special bond between parent and child, allows families to create their own traditions and to grow as individuals. In fact, my favorite part of being home with H&L is that I get to experience all of their development. Sean may be jealous at times, but I know that he is thrilled that one of us gets to experience it on the daily and I can send him photos and videos of big moments.
Try judging me about having my children on leashes. Seriously.
When people ask me if I like to be at home with the boys, I do. But be sure to ask me in 5 years if I miss these days, because even though the days can be tough, I know I will.
How do I attempt to keep my sanity? Read here.