I would have to say the biggest adjustment for me is learning how to be a ‘Stay at Home’ (SAHM) for a month and a half until my job starts next month. Sounds funny doesn’t it? I mean, why would being with my child more be so difficult for me to get used to? Does this make me a bad person or something?
No! Although it really took me talking it out with other Mamas to realize this and believe it for myself. It’s completely normal to lose your mind a little when your conversation stays at the two year-old level all day long. Why put all of these expectations on myself anyways? Comparing myself to other Mama’s was not helping and frankly, making me a little depressed.
|Photo courtesy of MommyPosh.com|
So what are some things that are helping curb the cray? Well, here are a few of my tips:
1. Perspective. I had to realize that I wasn’t going to have the privilege of staying at home with my precious little girl forever. More importantly, that she wasn’t going to be this little forever. I love the toddler she is, and one day I will miss it. Repeat after me: I will miss this one day. I will miss this…
2. Make plans. Have a pretty good idea of what you’ll have going on from day to day. There’s nothing more depressing than getting up and staying in your PJs until something pops up for you to do. So, make play dates, go to a park, museum or story time at the library. This will give you a sense of purpose each day. But, as one SAHM pointed out to me- don’t be afraid to veer off and go with the flow.
3. Get plugged into your community. Don’t know a whole lot of other SAHMs? The library is a good place to see what’s happening in your community. They’ll have events there as well as tell you about other (often free!) events that are going on in your area. It’s a great way to meet other people as well. The library is a wonderful resource. Oh yeah, stay and read some books, magazines and rent some DVDs, etc.
4. Exercise. Make time for it either during the day or when your spouse gets home. There is nothing worse than feeling frumpy or unattractive. Being active and taking time for yourself (yes, yourself!) is one of my most important tips. Go ahead and release those endorphins!
5. Lower your expectations of your child(ren) and yourself. True story: Last week, Little Miss and I went to story time at the library. Two minutes into it, she decides to throw a tantrum! I was so upset because she was so excited to go and we rushed out of the house to get there. After a few minutes, we ended up leaving the library with her SCREAMING her head off. Screaming+Library= no bueno. When we made it to the car, we were both crying (crying yourself is perfectly OK!). I was so frustrated and upset because my expectations of the morning were squandered. After everything settled, I thought: so what? Yes, we went, yes, we left right away but it’s no big deal! We went to a park instead and she had fun. I still don’t know what bothered her so much about being there but it really doesn’t matter.
I also know to lower my expectations if it’s anywhere near nap or meal time. Sometimes it can’t be helped but just realize- you may be asking for it!
Go easy on yourself and pat yourself on the back. You truly do have the toughest job in the world!
These are my tips, what are your tips? Leave a comment below and share your ideas!