One month down, a helluva-lot more to go.
This transition to stay-at-home-mom-dom is definitely not normal. Since the kids have been home since March, it is really fair to say it’s only been one month? And since I ran away to home to enlist the help of my own mom, can I take all the credit? (The answer to that one is a resounding “no.”)
But, it has been one full month since I had responsibilities outside of my family. I’ve learned a lot about myself. Mostly, that the stress I was carrying from those responsibilities was consuming my mind, body and soul. Now that I am free of that weight, let’s review what other things I’m shouldering, shall we?
Call me Gym, Jungle Gym
My only physical activity on certain days might be a unique game of dodge ball in which the balls are two rambunctious children who attempt (and often succeed) to climb, jump, lunge, ram and, yes, occasionally bite ALL OVER ME. There have been instances when I’m on the sofa minding my own business and, without warning, a 45-pound girl child lands on my chest. Apparently I’ve done a terrible job in my role as parent to set physical personal boundaries. I’ll work on it, but the little guy who suddenly shouts “BEAR COMING” and proceeds to roar toward me is pretty adorable.
But I’m not going to work on it — other than the biting, of course — because there are plenty of books and blog posts that say roughhousing is great for child development. We could stand to use a few more boundaries, though.
Interruptions can’t stop, won’t stop
I’m so used to interruptions – inbox pings, Slack dings, meeting reminder rings, people standing in doorways with zings (ha! I miss those only and the most).
The interruptions of today are nothing you don’t already know. Most all of them end with the letters S-N-A-C-K. We’ll definitely be working on that next.
The kids are like me, they snack when they’re bored. So I guess that means they are bored a lot. I have to break it to them constantly – pandemics + safer-at-home requirements are boring. Everything has germs and is closed. I’m pretty bored at home too. Here are a few of my favorite interruptions that broke through the monotony. No snark, I swear.
- “Mom, can you help us paint Roux’s nails?
- “Mom, can you tell Daddy to stop talking so loud on his call?
- “Mom, we want to play seep dea divers”
Here is my least favorite interruption.
- “Mom, will you help us build a fort?”
We essentially live in a glorified kid fort
Someone get my daughter a physics lesson, because I’m not having any luck explaining why a bedsheet draped over two high-back dining chairs can’t hold the weight of a sofa cushion.
Someone else also explain to her that two-year-old brothers are biologically wired to jump into and onto pillow towers. Only the sage wisdom of being three can prevent this meltdown-inducing mayhem.
I’ve threatened to stop putting her bed back together every night in hopes that the thought of sleeping on a bare mattress would deter her from ripping off the sheets. But, no matter how many extra, alternative bed linens I offer her, only the rainbow heart sheets are adequate for building her real-life rainbow house.
And then one night, she chose to sleep with her fitted sheet stretched over her headboard and footboard like a canopy. Man, do I wish I had the picture I thought I took.
I was convinced she’d wake up in the middle of the night and ask to make it back to normal. I was resigned and prepared for it.
She proved me wrong. Really, this whole experience has proved me wrong. I had decided a while ago that I was going to be a working mom for reasons personal to me. I didn’t think I could cut it as a stay-at-home mom because, holy moly, it take a special kind of patience I didn’t think I had. I definitely still don’t have it quite yet, but just like everything else, we’re working on it 🙂