I used to hear mothers talking about how busy they were, and how much work it is taking care of kids, and I used to think they were exaggerating. It couldn’t possibly be that much work. They couldn’t be that busy. Then I had a baby.
I had no idea. It is a lot of work. It makes you busy. And I only have one baby. I commend all those moms with more than one – or twins, multiples – and single moms.
Don’t get me wrong. I’m not complaining. I’m just noticing, pondering.
Being a mom is a different kind of busy. It’s a busy that gets added to all of your other busy. I said added to, not blended in. There’s a difference. You can’t just blend baby into the mix, put “take care of baby” on your to do list, and go on with your day. It’s like adding a whole new to do list and still having your other one.
For instance, I’m in graduate school. I have lots of out-of-class work to do. Before my baby was born I thought that I wouldn’t need that much help with babysitting. Just the two afternoon/evenings I go to school. Then I could be home with the baby, study/do homework while she sleeps or sits quietly. Sits quietly?!
Oh no, that’s not how it works. You can’t do homework and baby at the same time. And my particular baby doesn’t like to sleep all that much during the day (unless riding in the car or being pushed in the stroller or being held by me while I am standing up and moving – either walking around or dancing/swaying in place – none of which allow me to do homework at the same time). When she does nap, it’s usually only for about 30 minutes, and I usually use that time to wash bottles and stuff.
So, at any given time, I do homework or baby. The homework must get done. But, baby trumps homework.
Luckily, on weekends, my husband takes our baby out and about (other times, my mother-in-law babysits) while I get my work done. But as much help as I have and as domestic and organized as my husband is – he does laundry, goes to the market, takes the cars to get gas, and lots more (I’m not bragging, just giving credit where it’s due) – I often still don’t have time for “extras” like a shower early in the day (in which case I take one later), putting on makeup (if not going out, I don’t bother), doing my toenails, or getting my hair done. I try to make time for writing (this and my other blog) though because it’s an outlet and something that kind of soothes me.
Anyway, so while I’m pointing out that moms, including me, are busy, I’m not suggesting that there be any solution to it. It just is. And that’s okay. It’s a wonderful kind of busy that we are blessed to be. As for me, I’m thankful for my beautiful baby, a helpful husband, and opportunity to go to grad school. I’m a busy mom, and I wouldn’t want it any other way.