How to make it as a SAHM: Understand what you’re feeling is normal and temporary.

15 Mar

 

Being a stay at home mother is HARD!!! And unless you are one or have been one, you probably don’t get it! Most moms find the transition at the beginning to be the most difficult. As with any major life change, you tend to go through phases. I would almost call them phases of “grief” for your life before – life with a job and money and other grown ups to see and communicate with daily! It may have been weeks or months since you quit your job. And especially if you have a new baby, you have been in a “euphoric” state of cleaning, cooking, and caring for your little one! It has felt weird not to need your planner or have your office phone ringing to interrupt whatever it is you are doing every 5 minutes! On days you felt lazy, you seem to have found motivation in the thought that your husband is busy working and it wouldn’t be right for you to sit down and watch Oprah! Then suddenly, it happens. Your house is clean. Everything is organized. Your baby is too young to take to the park, every friend you have is at work, and, because of your new budget, you have no money to go shopping!

Here’s how it happened during my “stages” of becoming a SAHM:

1. Denial (Guilt)- I was going out of my mind and I actually felt guilty for doing so! This is what I wanted, after all! I had convinced my husband that this was in our family’s best interest and now…NO!!! I COULDN’T BE MISSING MY JOB!!! I love my baby and want to be with him! But I feel so useless!

2. AngerI started taking it out on my husband. I was miserable, lonely, and feeling guilty because I wasn’t happy staying home! As a result, I was crabby and mean and expected my husband to make up for it! (sorry, honey!)

3. BargainingIf I had a little extra money, maybe I could do a little shopping! I tried grant writing, craft fairs, ebay, and tutoring. The crafting and ebay didn’t go as planned, but the tutoring did! I soon had a few students that would pay for the groceries AND give me a little extra!

4. Depression – I decided that I could not live like this! Time to get a job! The pouting, the crying, the mood swings…they would all go away if I got a job. So, I applied, got a call, and nailed the interview!! Problem solved…or was it???

5. Acceptance – I cried the entire long drive home at the thought of missing my son’s first steps; Of not having time for those morning cuddles; and mainly, of the scary thought of someone hurting him! I had to protect him, and the answer was clear I CANNOT DO THIS!!! Time to rethink everything!!! Staying home is now who I am. Working is in the past. Time to buck up and make it everything I wanted it to be! I just had to figure out how…

…to be continued…

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