Stay-at-home moms do a lot. It is an exhausting but extremely rewarding job. Many people glamorize it and some even fantasize about becoming one someday. There are days that the stars align and I become supermom. On those days, I accomplish every task on my list. Then there are those days…the days that nothing seem to work out. The days that I end up with oatmeal stains on my shirt and cereal stuck to my hair. On those days, I can walk around with my clothes inside out all day and not notice until bedtime. Those are the days that I live for. Those are the days that remind me that it is an arduous and wonderful process raising a tiny human being. Those are the days when I get to really know my little Diva. Those are the days that stick out in my mind. To give you a little insight into the life of a stay-at-home mommy, I kept a detailed account of a normal day. It was my first day back from being away from baby Z for three days. On that particular day, I felt like we were back to square one in figuring each other out after the separation. The following events took place on that day:
9:45 am the Diva/Princess wakes up in a great mood. She has learned to bravely get off the bed by scooting to the edge, turning sideways and lowering herself to the ground. This requires holding up her entire body weight by gripping the sheets or bedding. Should her fingers fail or her strength wane, she lands on her butt, but this is a risk she is willing to take every damn time. This morning, she followed in the shoes of Kerri Scruggs and executed a perfect landing. She is ready for a diaper change. I meet her at the door and walk the few steps to her room. She goes to the changing table and attempts to help me by trying to climb up, I catch her just in time. I change her diaper and she leads me to the guest room to free her fur brother and sister from their kennel Prison.
10:00 am I give her apple juice (juice box) and a slice of bread with peanut butter and strawberry jelly. I turn my back to put a load of laundry in the washer. She is exceptionally quiet so I go check on her. She is on the floor completely covered in Apple juice ala the girl in flash dance. She doesn’t seem to care. She has found a sock and is happily attempting to wipe up the juice. Lesson learned, babies who bathe in apple juice become sticky and smell like sugary apples. A complete wipe down and change of clothes are in order.
11:30 am We bundle up to take the fur babies to potty and go to the mailbox. I fail to notice that I had not put her shoes back on after the wipe down. Baby Z takes off running on the wet and muddy grass trying to crunch leaves. Despite repeated pleas she refuses to come back inside. She takes off running towards the woods, I am forced to book it after her in my house shoes clutching a dog leash. The walk to the mailbox is abandoned. A change of socks is in order…now what did I do with her shoes?
12:00 pm I walk up the 4 stairs to take a laundry basket of clean clothes to baby Z’s room while she was downstairs distracted by a particularly arresting episode of Caillou. I had a window of less than 2 minutes to grab the clothes from the hamper and hurriedly hang them in her closet (I planned on arranging them at a later time). I hear “uh-oh!” I run into the kitchen to find baby Z making it rain with the dog food. I can’t complain; I am the one who left the baby gate open. I distract her by giving her a lid top. I grab the broom and dust pan and clean up the dog food that had been showered on the kitchen floor.
12:30 pm it’s time to feed baby Z. I warm up and dice meatballs for her. She is hungry and ready to eat. I put a row of meatballs, Mac n cheese, and vegetables on her high chair tray. She is content to eat and watch Sprout for about an hour. I manage to hang and fold an insane amount of laundry. When she is finally finished, she is covered in food and marinara sauce…everything is covered in bits of food and marinara. My daughter decided to wear her food. She innocently looks at me, raises her arms towards me and utters “mama!” My heart melts. My world is complete. Another wipe down and a change of clothes is in order.
1:45 pm I go to the bathroom. She is being entertained by the magazine bucket in the corner. Just as I get comfy, she takes her shoes and throws them in the tub. She then reaches over and attempts to turn on the water. Those shoes…those stupid pesky shoes…those damn pesky shoes. I had not put them on her after the last wipe down. Any attempts at using the bathroom have been successfully thwarted.
2:00-4:00 pm I put up toys in her toy chest and she pulls them out. Notice I have not mentioned nap time…that is because she has decided to give nap time the middle finger…unless she is gnawing on the boob. She gets in about 15 minutes but after about 3 hours of trying to get her to nap, I throw in the towel. I’m done.
45 minutes later, I hear tires coming up the driveway. It’s “dada!”, he is home. Z-baby squeals and runs to the door. He surveys the mountain of laundry and the clutter of toys in the living room. Instead of saying what is obvious, what is really on his mind, My husband picks up Z baby, leans over and gives me a kiss. With an amused smile he says, “looks like you guys did a lot of laundry today, good job!” Instantly my spirits are lifted…today was a good day.
If you ever want to have a stay-at-home-mom experience, come and spend a day with baby Z and I. I promise, it will be a hectic, fun filled adventure!
Originally written on 12/30/14