It will be my 1st year anniversary as a Work/Stay At Home Mom. Oh gosh I have a lot to share about, on what to expect, the feelings, how to cope, etc. And this will be a long one so bear with me ait?
What to expect?
Laziness/tiredness.. you call it lazy, I call it TIRED la wei.
For about the first 3 months, I felt..lazy. All I wanted to do was being lazy. But that was because I was heavily pregnant, I was in my third trimester. Hahaha that explains the laziness right? I wanted to do a lot, well at least my mind was not lazy. But the energy was mostly used by the baby in the womb.
After Amal was born, I concentrated on taking care of her, with breastfeeding and constant napping. It drained the energy out of me. I was thankful though that I didn’t have to rush in to work cause I would be sad to leave Amal behind. Just like what I felt when it was with Ayra and Amna.
Despite the perk of having to be there all the time for Amal, I was/am exhausted. All freaking time. I was lacking good sleep (for almost 5 years now), tired of ensuring the house is clean and tidy. I am neat freak, so I cannot see serabutness in the house, you know.
However, I am glad that we have Livy the Vacum Robot. I would be crazy without her, seeing hairs and dusts on the floor. Haha at least with Livy, I just need to switch her on and she will do the job. We will do the extensive cleaning once in 2 weeks. So that spares us a lot of energy and time.
Exhausted… the extreme of tiredness
Being home most of the time, with 3 under 5 children are really exhausting. It exhausts you physically and mentally. By physically, I’m sure you (the ones with toddlers) can understand how tired it is to attend to the needs of these children. I need to make sure breakfast, lunch and dinner are ready. On top that, don’t forget snacks. These kids love snacking. Plus, unhealthy snacks are a no-no. Though I fail that most of the times. Seriously, where can I get the extra time and energy to prepare our own healthy snacks? Thank god for frozen!
Mentally exhausted is another thing that fails me every time. You are at home, with the eldest being almost 5. What kind of intellectual conversation are you expecting? Most of the time is about Rainbow Dash and Sunshine Shimmer, Twilight Sparkle and Flutter Shy. Then it would be dinosaurs and horses, and fairies and princesses. The only time I get to stimulate my brain is when we are studying math or reading. That is a different level of patience hahahaha. It doesn’t help either that I have this sickness of overthinking. I cannot stop my brain from thinking about our financial, the schools, the education, the business, how to go about. I guess that drained out my brain even faster.
Privacy. What is that again?
I miss my me time. The time that I can have when I was at work. It doesn’t have to be a spa or a massage session. A ME time is a quiet time that I can have on my own doing whatever I want. I hardly get that anymore. Previously when I was at work, I usually had lunch in my room, while continuing working, or doing things I want to do. Surfing internet, checking out online shopping and stuffs. Or get out and hit the mall, just walking alone. That me time. Oh god I miss that. Now? Now I cant even pee in peace. Even if I lock the door, they still come knocking or yelling my name and asking me questions. “Mommy, how to spell dinosaur?” “ mommy, whatpe tu?” “mommy, amna hungry”. “mommy, amal is eating the playdoh!” How come they don’t kacau the father?????
When your body is tired, and your brain is drained, you will end up being moody. Almost all the time. And it makes you even crazier when you see your partner gets to spend time with his friends at work, or be in his own zone even for an hour or so. At least he gets to do it daily. You get this ‘meluat’ feeling and you start to get pissed off easily by whatever he is doing. I’ve been there and we have resolved that. When that hits you, you need to talk to your spouse asap. Do not let it bottled up. You will end up hurting your children easily. You get irritated easily and scold them for the smallest reason. I am guilty of that and god I wish I don’t have to go down that road again. It is scary for me, and my family. Sometimes I am more a momster than a mommy. Hahaha Now don’t get me wrong, respect to the Husband is there. It’s just you cannot comprehend things positively when you are beyond exhaustion, mentally and physically. Too many frustrations. So that is why communication on your expectations, etc is important.
When you were once an employee, (highly paid lagi tu) and now you stay at home with no pay, you will become extremely insecure. I am not talking about insecurity towards your husband, just insecure as a whole. You don’t get to spend money like before. You want something, you gotta check your purse and calculate. You pause and breathe in and walk away. You don’t have savings and that scares the shit out of you for what ifs. I get that almost on daily basis even up till now. One day, after solat, I confided in HIM on what I feel etc. I felt lost. I cried my eyes out. I prayed to Allah to ease my way. I opened the Quran and I believe He showed me the story of Prophet Musa. The page showed me the story of when Paraoh ordered for baby boys to be killed out of fear of the prophecy. Musa’s mom was so scared. She put him in a boat and sailed him. But Allah assured her that he will be returned to her.
This verse taught me to have faith in Allah. Have faith in Allah. Have faith in Allah. Dua, and work on it. Work on whatever I can work on. Keep on praying. Rest assured Allah has things worked out for us. Just have faith. And so, whenever I feel insecure, I feel down, I feel lost, especially financially, I remembered this story. So, if you feel lost on something, doa and pray to Allah. Talk to Him cause He is always listening. Then open the Quran to find the answer.
Seems like i am rambling more on the bad sides rather than the good ones kan? hahha
well, not everything is bad! be positive!
Stick like a glue
Your children will be more attached to you and you end up falling in love with them over and over again. Even though they just scream their lungs out at each other just now. Or they pick their poo from their diaper. And scattered their shit on the bed. Literally. And at times when they had nothing to do, hanging on your leg will be an activity. Just for fun. (but not for you when you need to do works)
Time is gold
Though it may seem like I have all the time in the world, trust me, that was just illusion. It’s Monday today, and suddenly it’s Monday again. When I was about to appreciate the weekends, Monday comes and plays the blues. I have all the things that I want to do for the week, then something comes up and bye bye list. We see you next week. That is one of the reasons for Lil’ Tummy not moving (or perhaps my excuse). the perks is you get to plan your day/week ahead (and pray that your plan sticks). I dont have to worry when Amal is hospitalized cause work is not asking me to be in the office. My time is devoted totally to her wellbeing. and that makes me a better mom. You get to plan for lunch with your ex-colleague, or dates with your daughther. and God is generous, He eases your way to it.
My time is mostly spent on the kids (duh). I get to know my children more. I get to follow closely their development. I get to bring Amna to her physiotherapy sessions without guilt (work waiting in the office), I get to do exercise with her (though not on daily basis). Amna loves imitating my yoga moves, so it helps her to stretch her muscles and use her left limbs more. Ayra gets to come home from school to mommy’s cooking. We get to go on dates, just the two of us. One day is spent just me and Amna, and other day is spent just me and Ayra. We get to have our own private conversation, eat ice cream and be silly. I love that.
Healthier lifestyle (or so I believe)
I try to do Yoga at least once a week (but don’t take my word for it), eat healthy, cook healthy, gardening, etc. I need my family to eat healthily. We hardly dine out anymore. First, it can be costly, second, it can be dirty. Or unhealthy. We cannot buy health, but we can prevent unwanted side effects from happening. Diseases start from the gut: diabetes, heart diseases, kidney failure. So, what we now will have its effect 20 years later. So in order to be healthy in the next 20 years, we have to eat right, right now. I cant however be this conscious everyday. I am a human after all. So we do skip a bit once or twice. But drink lots of water, and balance out with veges and fruits.
Own Business Empire (Bahaha)
Now it may seem cool to able to start your own business, with your own brand etc. but my god, it is so hard to be persistent! I have things planned out, A to Z, but execution is really killing me! To juggle family, which is always always my priority, and business is really hard. The most frustrating part is marketing. I have laid the plan, how to do it, etc. I dont habe a partner to push me and work togehther. plus I don’t have much time to do so. I guess I need to take things one step at a time and not to have so much hope kot.
So basically, there are ups and downs of being at home mom. What you need is strength (mentally and physically), support system, team work, and what I find important but easily missed is: ME time. This is crucial. Just take the time off. Don’t over think. Do what you want for 2 hours, alone. Go out with friends, laugh. That little things help you sane.
Don’t I miss having my own job? Oh YES I do. At times I feel like I am a better mom if I am working. I would less of a momster, and more on a mother.
So where do I go from here? I will let Allah set the road for me. I have my aims, but the road will be set by Allah. I do what I can and the rest is up to Him. I am always open to possibilities.
Till then, please give me lots of coffee, cakes, and your prayers.