So this week is my first week as an official stay at home mom. I was going to write this yesterday but yesterday was a not so great day. So I held off to protect the innocent…or not so innocent (…Brooke…)
On day 3, here are my thoughts:
1. Where the crap does the day go? Specifically, the morning. It’s like we wake up, do morning things like feed the baby, pump, make breakfast, drink coffee, and all of a sudden its lunch time, my coffee is cold, and we’ve watched a lot of Elmo. (freaking Elmo man…)
2. Toddlers. Are. Demanding. I mean, I knew she was demanding, but wow, it’s kind of no wonder daycares charge what they do. Kids will drive you batty if you let them. Yesterday was one of those days where she whined about everything. And it made me want to yank my hair out.
3. How do I keep her busy? Look. I’ll be honest. She knows how to use the iPad to watch Elmo (and whatever else is on PBS kids) which comes in SUPER handy when I’m out of commission (i.e. feeding Henry or pumping). But anytime her eye catches my phone or the iPad, she freaks out for Elmo. I’ve got to figure out ways to keep her busy that don’t involve electronics. We do art projects and play, but I need to get things done too, y’know?
4. How will I get it all done? I know it isn’t all on me, but I’ve got a little OCD when it comes to a straight house and when Robert gets home from work or on the weekends, I don’t want him to have to spend it doing laundry or vacuuming…but as I referenced in #1, where the crap does the day go?? I run out of time to do all these things before I know it.
5. Henry is the most chill baby ever. I thought Brooke was a low maintenance baby (oh, she is making up for this now…) but I think God knew that I wouldn’t survive if he was any more needy than he is…and he’s not needy at all. The kid just wants to eat, sleep, and poop. Crying is rare, screaming is even more rare (has happened a couple of times but we got it under control in no time). I assure you, having a baby like this is not normal…but I’m counting my blessings!
6. Getting out of the house. Tuesday and Wednesday both I made treks out of the house. Tuesday was the post office and Best Buy, and Wednesday was the grocery store.
BOTH TIMES I was ‘parent shamed’. It was infuriating.
The first time was at the post office. Brooke was screaming at my legs to sit on the counter to watch what I was doing. “Counter! COUNTER MAMA! UP MAMA COUNTER!” UGH. So I hoisted her onto the counter right beside me and I had my hand on her the whole time. I had to fill out a customs form so I took her off the counter and set her on the floor so I could do what I needed to, and this man (first reference here of a man) says to the person helping him, loud enough for me to hear, “I can’t believe that baby was up there like that, I just knew she would fall off and kill herself.” REALLY DUDE? I was RIGHT there. Like, RIGHT THERE. Would you prefer she be at my ankles screaming her head off? Please, tell me what YOU would like me to do.
The second time was at the grocery store. She did really well the whole time, but she doesn’t like to sit in the cart for super long, so I let her get out and walk around, and she did great! We go to check out, and I get her back in the cart. Of course she doesn’t want to go back in (duh). So I am standing at the cart at the register and she stands up in the little seat part. I’m not going to fight it because I’m right there and have my hand on her waist. I turn around and get startled at the man standing RIGHT beside us (in the check out aisle, those things are not wide). I smiled and said hello, and he looked at me sternly and said “I’m here because she’s standing up and you’re not paying attention.” Oh. My. God.
I could have screamed, but I just turned around, paid, and got on my way.
I hear so much of moms getting ‘mom shamed’ or judged by other mothers, but I hadn’t heard much about how freaking opinionated men are (and both of these instances, the men were probably grandfathers, or at least that age) but I was so angry that they both felt like they were in a place to tell me how I was parenting incorrectly. I would never intentionally put my kids in a situation where they could hurt themselves, and in each instance, I was right there.
And in both instance, I wanted to ask if they’d prefer that she be screaming at the top of her lungs instead, but I didn’t. Maybe I’m not parenting the ‘right’ way, but I’m parenting the way I know how and the way that works for us and keeps us ‘sane’. Just because it isn’t the way you would do something doesn’t make it wrong (you know, unless it is seriously wrong).
I will say that for both of these instances, there were double or triple the comments of how good both of my babies are, how sweet Brooke is, etc. But isn’t it always the negative that gets burned into our brains?
7. Have I made the wrong decision to stay at home? I don’t know the answer to this yet…On day 3, I keep going back and forth from ‘probably’ to ‘definitely’…oh boy.
At least she is super cute…