Kelsey and I had a pretty big week a couple of weeks ago. If you follow me on Instagram, then you probably saw some life changing moments. Kelsey started daycare, and I went back to work full time. She handled it like a boss! As for me? I was more of a wreck. For the last 18 months, I was a Stay-at-home-mom (SAHM), and she knew nothing other than me being with her all day, and vice versa. And in those last 18 months, I learned a few things about being a SAHM.
Let go of your expectations
I don’t mean just give up on everything! I mean, let the small things slide. Before I had Kelsey, everything had to be perfect – everything clean, organized, etc. I spent so much time in the beginning trying to keep things perfect at all times, that I wasn’t enjoying my time with my kids. There are definitely exceptions, but for the most part – just take it easy.
When you have a baby, the playdate works in two ways: 1. Baby socializes, and 2. You have contact with civilian life aka adults. I wish I would’ve done this more because I started to become a hermit, and really got social anxiety. I think I didn’t plan too many play dates because I was still working a little bit, so I never knew when my assistant was going to need me. I still should’ve planned those playdates and worked around them.
Take your “Me Time” and “Spouse Time”
When you’re a SAHM, your life is no longer yours. You have a little one to look after all day long, and you still need to get the cooking and cleaning done. You’re spread out really thin, and it feels like you’re always taking care of everyone else first. It’s important to take time out and concentrate on yourself, because if you don’t – you’re going to lose yourself. It’s also important to take the time out to spend one-on-one time with your spouse or partner. They can easily feel left out, and it’s easy for us to leave them out because of the “they can take care of themselves” mentality.
Schedule out your time
It’s really surprising to me that I didn’t do this. I’m a pretty organized person, and go nuts for itineraries. With Carter, I was really on top of things; with Kelsey, I was more nonchalant about at it all. Having a schedule keeps you on track and you don’t feel all over the place.
Advice from others
Some of us are great at taking advice from others, and some of us aren’t. With so much advice always being given from all ends of the spectrum, I’ve just learned to listen and say “Thank you.” Use what you think will be helpful, and keep in mind the others you just want to throw out the window. You’ll never know when that unsolicited advice might come in handy and might actually be useful.
So these are my great takeaways from being a SAHM. It’s funny because when I had Carter, I always said I didn’t want to be a SAHM. Now that I’ve had Kelsey and was able to spend the time with her, I feel guilty that I didn’t do it with Carter. I’m learning not to feel guilty about it though because I have to realize that I’m in a different place then I was when I was when he was born, and anyone else’s opinion about it doesn’t matter. If you’re in a position where you’re able to stay at home with your kids, I would highly recommend it. Now for you other SAHM pros – what’s some of the advice you would give that would be helpful?