Thursday, May 19, 2011

Stay-at-home Moms need a break too!

When I was younger, being a stay-at-home mom is what I always dreamt of becoming when I grew up.  How fabulous would it be to get to stay at home everyday with your kids and just play with them... all day long?  I figured I'd never actually be that lucky and I'd end up having to work a 9-to-5 job in order to support our family and have the nice things that we wanted for ourselves, just like most of the moms out there today, but to my surprise I have been fortunate enough to have the opportunity to stay at home with my two little guys.  

Now while I love being with them all day, everyday, I have also found that being a stay-at-home mom is way more challenging than I had always assumed it would be.  From the moment they wake up at 7:30am (8 if I'm lucky) to the moment they fall asleep at 10pm 8 o' clock on the dot, I am usually with them.  This is great because I don't miss a beat with either of them.  I know I will not miss my lil' guy's first steps, and I'll be there to witness my 3-year-old's first potty word come out of his mouth (I keep telling myself that he yelled SIT when he dropped his cup from the back deck last weekend).  But after a long, tiring day of chasing after my preschooler and telling him repeatedly that it is NOT okay to push baby down when he has finally pulled himself up, and then trying to calm the baby down when his big brother comes and snatches all his puffs in one swipe... I need a break!

Take time out for yourself!  This is advice that I have gotten from each and every fellow mommy out there. "Join a mommy's day out, or meet up at the local playground or Panera with other moms", they say.  But for me, it's not that easy.  I am only 25, with two kids and have moved two hours from my hometown to live with my husband.  The other moms that I meet are usually a little older and look at me as if I should be on that MTV show, Teen Mom.  I guess I do look much younger, but I feel that it puts me at a disadvantage.  Or maybe I just need to get over my insecurities and put myself out there to make other mommy friends.  I do have a few friends who also have kids, but they work during the day and barely have enough time to spend at home with their families, much less make time to hang with me.  

I guess I'm getting a little off track here, but I suppose the point I'm trying to make is that being a stay-at-home mom is not as easy as everyone makes it out to be.  When I wish I could just sit and relax and play batman with my son, I am usually doing laundry, folding it, doing dishes, making lunches, feeding the baby... you name it and I do it.  I think being a stay-at-home mom also means full-time-maid to the husband who gets to go to work and interact with other adult human beings all day.  Since he's at work all day and I'm just at home playing with the kids all day, it's expected that I have the place well kept at all times.  If only they could switch spots with us for a week, I think men would have a whole new found respect for the stay-at-home mom/housewife!  We need a break too...

How do some of you fellow stay-at-home mama's take a time out for yourself?  Do you feel overwhelmed being at home everyday with your kids or is it the absolute dream you always imagined it would be?  Maybe I need to start scheduling my days out with activities and plan the chores around the times they are either in bed or napping (but this is usually my only "me time").  I'd love to get some comments and feedback on some of the secrets to juggling it all and keeping your sanity in the process.


  1. I don't know if I have any secrets, but I have sympathy. I'm a stay at home mom with my first, now 10 months. It really is a difficult job! Some days, it is a dream, and other days it is terribly overwhelming. I am lucky to have a sympathetic husband, though. When she was about 4 months old, I took a photography class one night a week for a month. After spending several hours caring for my daughter during her grumpiest time of the day, he developed a great deal of sympathy for my job. I tend to take time for myself after she goes to bed or during naps, but it is certainly hard to juggle.

  2. Hi - just found your blog while Googling for "stay home mom needs break" - I am "the Dad" and my poor wife recently chose to stay home with our 1 and 3 year olds... All I can say is "damn." they are challenging! We have crazy, high energy kids and her job is nuts... I find myself feeling horrible just for leaving in the morning to go to work. She is crazy exhausted, worn out emotionally and physically every day. She wants to do more to get out but the challenge is they are nuts to take out - the one year old kicks when you try to change his diaper, tender tantrums, etc.. I don't know how we could even take them anywhere at this age - Anyway I appreciate the questions you've asked as I have the same ones for my wife - need to find her an outlet or break or something that gets her out of the house (even when she's tired) and gets her batteries some time to recharge - or course the challenge is also doing this on a zero budget as I'm the only one working and money is tight.. so I guess the question is what could she do to get a break that does;t cost a ton of money (going to the lavish spa is out of the question.. sorry honey ;) )thanks!

    1. To the Dad: I you can, take the kids out of the house on a Sat. or Sun. and let her just lounge and do whatever she wants. The rule being that she not clean or do anything for anyone but herself. You will get some great bonding time with your kids at the park or where ever you go and she gets to sleep or read a book or watch a marathon of bad tv. Man, that sounds nice. I am going to ask my husband for that this weekend!

    2. I am also home with a 1and 3 year old and I find that just getting out of the house for a few hours, either once the hubby is home from work or even on the weekend, helps dramatically. I don't even have to be at a spa or getting a mani/pedi (although that would be nice), it can be something as simple as heading to the grocery store without two rambunctious kiddos, or my favorite... going to Target to pick up a cheap bottle of wine and maybe browse through the new swimsuits they just put out. I think just as long as you make sure that she gets some sort of alone time to herself without the kids and without the responsibilities of cleaning and cooking, etc... then it will make a big difference. You sound like a really supportive and caring husband, which that alone can truly make a difference. Make time for the two of you to go out together for dinner or date night occasionally as well. That is where my husband and I are lacking now. Good luck and let your wife know that she is definitely not alone in her stay-at-home mom struggles. It's by far the toughest job around and you dont get paid, no vacation can be tough at times. But it's also the greatest blessing to be able to spend so much quality time with our kids and see every little milestone that they hit. Take care! :)

  3. I feel the same way all other moms are older than me. I am 24 almost with a 4 y/o and a 6 month old both girls.