Prior to having my baby girl, I swore up and down that I would go back to work. I had big dreams of becoming a CEO one day, just like my father. Nothing was going to stop me from achieving my dreams. Nothing.
On August 13, 2011, everything changed the instant my baby girl was born. I looked into her big blue eyes and promised her that I would love her forever. The thought of leaving her every day to return to a desk job was daunting. I didn’t want to share her or even let others hold her, how could I leave her with a stranger at daycare for hours a day?
The role of becoming a stay a home mom has not come easy. Finding the same pleasure and sense of accomplishment that I once drew from corporate world recognition is now in forms of completing loads of laundry, unloading the dishwasher, sweeping, changing diapers and making dinners. Having conversations about latest marketing strategies has changed to encouraging word development like “ma ma ma ma” and “da da da da”. Time spent by myself commuting to and from work and listening to my favorite tunes or chatting with my friends, now has a different meaning and is much harder to find. At the end of every day, as I sit down to relax, I find myself wondering why there are not more hours in the day!
One of the hardest things about being a stay at home mom is finding the time for me. When I do take time for myself, I battle my own thoughts about whether or not I am being selfish. The truth of the matter, to be a happy and healthy mom, I need time for myself to do the things that I want to do. To do the things that keep me sane. To do the things that put a smile on my face.
How can I find the time when I have a little one clinging onto my leg, a husband who is hungry and a constantly growing to do list? Something must give!
My saving grace has been two things. A crockpot and Stephanie O’Dea’s cookbook “Make it Fast, Cook it Slow”. All of the recipies are healthy, budget conscious, limited ingredients and time sensitive. Each crockpot provides a great dinner, and leftovers for the week. Which saves the whole family time and money.
Our favorite recipe has been the whole baked chicken with fennel, kalamata olives and feta cheese which I serve over a rice or quinoa.
I find that the time that I would have spent in the kitchen prepping and cooking, I spend running, biking or swimming or doing nothing, which is doing something. When I am able to do the things that make me happy, I am a much happier mama and wife.
What trade-offs have you made to find your own “me time”?
Be well and take care mamas!