Doing my job as a stay-at-home mom, living on one income.

Last year I had two MAJOR surgeries.

And I have a bisecting scar on my abdomen to prove it.

One of those was a C-section, so along with recovering from major surgery I had a little baby (as well as a toddler) who needed my care.

Is it any surprise that I let anything non-essential (such as organization and deep cleaning and home improvement, etc…) go? Even into the Fall, when I should have been recovered and not desperate for a nap everyday (even though I would go to be at 9pm and get up at 8am) I still felt like I was wading through ankle deep water every day, trying to get everything done.

I honestly did no extra projects, like home improvements or crafty stuff or writing. Or learning Latin or anything outside of reading YA fantasy novels, watching Netflix and playing Bejeweled Blitz on my phone.

We finally figured out that I was deficient in B-Vitamins and as soon as I started on those, I had 100% more energy. I could go to bed at 10pm and get up at 6am without feeling exhausted, or desperately needing a nap. I still feel tired, just not desperately so, and I actually feel energized in the mornings again.

I was horrified at how messy and out of control our house had become. It was a wreck! The kids toys were everywhere, completely unorganized, cluttering up the kitchen, bookshelves, floor, you name it. The kitchen was a mess and my stove was beyond reason disgusting, and we won’t even mention the microwave. My kids rooms where cluttered, unorganized and I couldn’t remember the last time I had changed anyone’s sheets. (Ew)

And lets not even talk about how my relationship with my hubby was doing. When did I get so selfish and mean??

I had to do a major, major deep cleaning. Not just of my house, but of everything in my life. I realized that I thrive in an environment that is clean, organized and accessible, on a physical, emotional and spiritual level.

This is my JOB. When we arranged for me to stay home with the kids and my hubby to work full time, part of the understanding was that I would man the fort at home (cleaning, laundry, kids, cooking etc) so that my hubby could concentrate on his job. (Now my hubby does have a few specific chores that only he does at home, and he is always willing to help out when I need it, I’m just saying that I am generally in charge of the stuff that goes on at home, just like he is generally in charge of earning the income we need to live on. We work together to decide how we spend that income.)

Somewhere along the way, I stopped doing my job and expecting my hubby to do it all. ALL OF IT.

Piles of dishes that I was expecting him to clean or just taking over the kids and EVERYTHING as soon as he gets home (exhausted) from work. Part of this was just because I was so tired all of the time, but still. I had lost sight of something important to me.

Now, I make a point of doing as many of the dishes before dinner as possible, so who ever does the dishes after (usually me, as I give hubby the chance to either play with the kids or give them baths) doesn’t have a giant pile to deal with. I wipe down the stove, counters and floor after dinner so that when we sit down to spend some time together (after the kids are in bed) I don’t have to groan at the thought of all the crap I left for myself to do tomorrow.

We clean up after ourselves. #1 has learned to put his dishes in the sink and that we put our toy away before we get a new one out to play with. (I actually did a toy purge and now they only have enough toys to fit in one giant Rubbermaid. They can get out one toy at a time). #1 and I read more stories together, watch less TV and do more learning. We worked on shapes, colors and simple addition and subtraction today. It was FUN and extremely fulfilling.

#1 wants to build towers with me and color or paint instead of watching endless TV shows.

I spend between 30min-1hr studying my religion, which has made me more clear-sighted than ever.

I make a point of going out of my way to do things for hubby so that he has an easier time (because the poor man is stressed right now. He has a lot going on at work and with church service.)

And the most important part?

I am happier. I am doing my job. A job that I absolutely LOVE.

Although, I do need to clean #2’s bedroom. It is a wreck. AFTER I finish painting the kitchen.

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