Ok, I’m back.
If you are a single stay-at-home parent, you know how difficult it is to spend 24 hours of every day of every week of every month taking care of a tiny human being who wholly depends on you for food, love, diaper changes, entertainment and education. You know what an arduous task ANYTHING becomes when you have a 21 pound 11 ounce little one attached to your hip and pulling your hair. Showering is basically impossible (or is my baby boy the only one who screams as if he’s just lost his mother once I step behind the curtain?). Eating? It’s complicated, to say the least. Every chore that I found frustrating to make time for before having a baby (e.g. cleaning the living room, washing and folding laundry, checking emails and pooping) has become that much more irksome to complete while Equis is awake. Let me tell you, I thank God for the Kindle: Equis can no longer pull my books’ pages apart before my very eyes!
If you are not a parent, then the only way you can comprehend the truth of my words is to dedicate a day to babysitting a friend’s infant or toddler . If you are not exhausted after just a few hours of chasing after a crawling/walking/running child, prying sequins and plastic ties from their fingers while on route to his or her mouth and changing a pooped pamper three times within 10 minutes, then you are a super human being, and your descendants will outlast mine. Now excuse me while I move the stroller my son was trying to climb up off his tear-stained face. ...
approximately $140,000 a year. (According to a survey conducted by Salary.com in 2007). “Look!” I excitedly told my mom, “Moms really do work hard!” She smiled and nodded, reminding me that she raised two girls, seemingly very much on her own.
Recently, I spent a few weeks pitying myself and my new demanding role as a single stay-at-home mom. The adage “A mother’s work is never done,” played over and over in my head; and I took to evilly telling my son he was annoying. When my mom noted, “He’s just a baby,” I felt guilty but defended myself by saying, “Well, he can’t understand me.” Mind you, when another family member followed my lead, I yelled, “Only I’M allowed to call my son annoying!” I learned that it is all too easy to fall into a well of resentment when your life becomes completely about someone who is not you. But let someone else try to join in on that resentment, and the urge to protect your child becomes overwhelming.
My newest objective (instead of whining, "Woe is me!") is to create pockets of me-time in my weeks (like writing this blog after Equis has gone to sleep), even if doing so means keeping my eyes closed for an extra ten minutes while my son bangs on my head, yelling, “Mama! Mama!” in the morning.
As every day brings Equis closer to being one (whole!) year old (also my Mommy anniversary), I feel amazed at how much has transpired in the past ten months. Equis continues to make me proud by meeting developmental milestones. Smiling? Check. Holding his own bottle? Check! Eating baby food? LOTS of it. Crawling? Too quickly. Standing up and sitting down? Check! Check! When Equis was a month old, I thought, “Nine months is so far from now!” But, last week, I cried while removing all of Equis’ outgrown 3-6 and 6-9 month clothing from his drawers.
How is it that every day can feel so long but the months pass quickly? Maybe it has something to do with the fact that Equis forces me to live in every precious moment. As much as I may complain about how tough life is as an “unemployed” mom, I treasure the grand experience of staying home with my son.
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