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As a stay-at-home mom to four children, I know how bad the burn-out can be. Day in and day out, the same routine. Are you a stay-at-home mom? It’s tough when the only person you talk to all day is a two-year-old, and loneliness and isolation can lead to other problems like depression and anxiety. Moms, I commend you for what you do every day.
This is my daily routine:
I wake up at 6:20 a.m., get dressed(sometimes), and get my two older kids up and dressed. The girls go to school, so I get them ready for their carpool & school, then make myself and my toddler breakfast(the younger children are probably awake by now). Next, I start cleaning up breakfast while my two younger kids play(or watch TV). After the kitchen is done, I start a load of laundry, unload the dishwasher, sweep the kitchen floor, wipe down the table & counters, pick up any toys left around, vacuum the & dining rooms(LANDLORDS: STOP CARPETING DINING ROOMS.), get the toddler a snack, switch the laundry, & start another load. By now, I should be starting to think about what I plan on making for lunch and dinner. Tonight, it’ll probably be spaghetti squash alfredo for dinner, with green beans on the side. For lunch, maybe chicken nuggets(baked, of course) with corn on the cob.
On to toddler meltdown #1 of the day– because I poured his juice into the wrong cup… Oy! Then I pour the apple juice into the *correct* cup and he starts freaking out because he suddenly wants Sweet Tea, which we don’t have. So here I am, locked in my bedroom trying to breastfeed my 5-month-old while the two-year-old continues to throw his toys around and slam doors because we don’t have any Sweet Tea. I picked up this amazing Fox & Clover Oh For Fox Sake 16oz Stainless Steel Travel Tumbler Mug and it really fits my mood right now… plus it’s stainless steel, kid-proof, and eco-friendly 😉
It’s finally time to start making lunch. Thank the Lord! So let’s pour some mommy-juice into our new mug and put on a movie. Chicken nuggets in the oven and corn on the stove, set the timer because I WILL forget it’s there…
Finally some peace and quiet– Time to grab the laundry an start separating it. Once that’s done, it’s lunchtime. I plate the chicken nuggets and corn Gordon-Ramsay-style(NOT!) and watch my finicky toddler not eat his lunch.
After getting cleaned up from lunch, the baby will probably want to nurse again, and I need to re-vacuum the floors in the living room and dining room. Tula to the rescue! I can wear & nurse the baby and vacuum my floors at the same time thanks to what my best friend calls my “hippy-dippy baby carrier.” It really is my go-to baby item though, especially when we’re out and about with four children. I can actually put my toddler in a back-carry and wear my infant on the front at the same time, which I don’t do often but it works when necessary. It’s finally nap time… for the kids. Not me. Ever. Just kidding, they don’t ever both sleep at the same time. But they happen to be quiet. So now is the time that I can try to get caught up on school work. I’m a full-time student, too. Before I know it, it’s 3 o’clock. Time to pack everyone into the mini-van and go to Dunkin’ Donuts.
This is “my time.” Between three and four, I get my half-priced iced coffee from Dunkin’ Donuts and sit in the car in silence at the girls’ bus stop while the younger children sleep in their car seats. Sometimes I read a book, but my library card has acquired some fines(thanks, lost Paw Patrol DVD) so mostly I just play on my phone. When four o’clock finally rolls around and the girls get off of the bus, we head to the grocery store and get whatever ingredients I am missing for dinner, go home, and cook. As I’m cooking, the girls do their homework at the kitchen table. We eat, Dad comes home from work, the girls shower, the toddler and baby have a bath, and the girls play until bedtime at 8 o’clock. Now that Dad is home, fed, and hopefully showered, I can hand the baby off to him for a little bit, to get the kitchen and dining room cleaned up from dinner. Once everything is cleaned up, Dad and the younger children are usually vegged out on the couch watching TV, and I start getting ready for bed myself. It feels so good to shower off all of the stress, baby puke, etc from the day. I load the dishwasher again, take my meds, nurse the baby again, and we all go to sleep(sometimes).
Sound familiar?? A lot of times stay at home moms don’t feel like they are contributing enough or don’t feel like they have a life, but in reality, Moms, you do a lot! You keep people alive, nourished, and happy(relatively). Even if you’re like me and need to take Zoloft every day, you keep on trying–and that’s what matters! When you feel like giving up because life just gets so monotonous and you feel like you’re not making a difference, please take a step back to look at all that you have accomplished that day. You woke up, that’s a great start! Please remember that you’re not alone!! There are plenty of moms just like you and I, who are sick and tired of doing this every day, over and over. Make steps to find your “village,” whether that is on social media, at a playgroup, or at one of those funky wine & paint parties. And if you ever just want to talk– I’m all ears! 🙂 Moms, you’re killing it!