As I was standing in my kitchen this morning making sandwiches for lunch, I started to think about my choices in life. Namely, the ones that led me to being a stay at home mom.
I do love being at home with my kids. I have not stepped into the work force in over 10 years because we decided that I would stay at home to raise the kidlets no matter how tight the finances became. I have loved it. But let me tell you the cold truth about being a stay at home mom. It is can be a really thankless job with few rewards. There are days I wonder if anyone notices the work behind it.
It isn’t that I want rewards and praise. I guess it is more that I just don’t want to be invisible anymore. What is a day in my life like?
I wake up at 5:45am. Early enough to get up and start the coffee and get moving before the kids get up. I get the kids up. Fix their breakfast. Make their lunches. Make sure their backpacks have everything in it they are supposed to have. Get them off to school. Come home and then start working. I make sure everyone has clean clothes in their closets. I clean the bathrooms and kitchen. Vaccuum the house. Do some laundry. Make sure the Little Diva has gotten up, has a clean diaper, warm milk and is ready to start her day. At some point I probably go to the grocery store. Somehow I end up there everyday. During the time that the Kidlets are in school, I am usually spending either a couple of hours up at the school volunteering or I am spending a few hours on the computer doing other PTA things. And let’s not forget that during all of this, I have Little Diva with me, so I take time to play with the Barbies, the dolls and the games that she wants to play. I am also coordinating things for the soccer teams and making sure that everyone knows the schedule for the week. All of that needs to be done before the Kidlets get home from school. Because once the boys get home, it is homework time, snack time and friend time. That goes until I get dinner ready (or bug my Geek-Man to fix dinner). Then it is nag time until the boys get their showers and get into bed. And the bedtime routine lasts at least 30 minutes. By the time they are all tucked in and going to sleep, I get a moment to glance at my husband. Exhaustion usually keeps me from having any quality time with him, but we do manage to spend at least some time alone to try to recharge our relationship. It is tough.
Usually by about 11:00pm I try to head off to bed. But first I make sure all of my kidlets are tucked in safely and asleep. By the time my head actually hits the pillow it is usually close to midnight.
Most of the time I do this without thinking about it. Most of the time it is just the way things are. But there are days I wonder if I am really making a difference. I wonder if the lunches that I pack mean any more than if I just gave them $2.00 to just buy lunch. Or if their beds didn’t get made…would they notice? Does it matter if I volunteer so much of my time or is it just something filling my days?
I don’t know. I guess today, when my allergies are acting up, my kids were grumpy leaving for school and I really just don’t want to do anything…I guess today I wonder if I am making a difference that matters. Or am I just spinning my wheels?