Questioning being a Stay at Home Mum

It’s been a tough time lately. We have all been a bit poorly which never helps. Endless coughing and a lack of sleep does nobody any good. Then, potentially as a result of her poorliness, LM has been incredibly clingy. I know it’s just a phase “separation anxiety” etc…. But boy is it hard work!

She wants to be on me at all times and with me whatever I am doing. I can’t go to the loo without her standing at the gate in the lounge screaming at me. I can’t sit down without her clamouring all over me, pulling my hair and necklace, standing on me and generally wriggling all over the place with her perfect little elbows and knees digging in wherever they land.

I can’t look at my phone without her trying to snatch it off me so she can push buttons or play a baby game. There is screaming galore if I resist and hide my phone because I have had enough of her using it. I can’t have a drink without her clawing at me to have some so I have to hide whatever I am drinking and just grab a sip when I can… Meaning I certainly don’t drink enough at the moment. She wants to be carried by me at times when I can’t carry her resulting in her clinging on my legs and clawing at me while I try and make lunch.

Hiding from a nappy change

Hiding from a nappy change

It is exhausting and I feel like I have zero personal space and zero opportunity to just have a bit of peace. In fact the only times she doesn’t cling to me are when it is time for a nappy change – when she runs away and tries to cram herself behind a chair or something to hide, or when she has spotted some opportunity for mischief making. She throws her meals on the floor and deliberately spills he drink so she can splash and play in it (if anyone can direct me to a genuinely non-spill cup I would be massively grateful) and likes to push the buttons on the side of the TV no matter how much I say no, with a look of absolute glee.

This has been made harder by the fact it is half term. I adore my little boy and I wasn’t dreading half term at all. I don’t want to be a mummy who wishes away the time spent with my children… But I find it so hard to entertain both of them I really do.

I have tried loads of activities but one or the other gets bored. Monday we were due to go to soft play with friends but unfortunately they were poorly. I decided not to worry though and take the opportunity to do some messy play and get cracking with some finger painting in the bath. Great fun for all of 5 minutes until Monkey announced he’d had enough. LM lasted about 5 more minutes and then started crying to go and play with her brother. So it ended up with them both shut up in his bedroom while I cleaned the bathroom. (our stair gate broke so I have to shut them in to keep LM safe). It was so stressful and honestly I ended up wondering why I had bothered. PhotoGrid_1455867923529

We have had some lovely times this week and I have grabbed every opportunity to get outside when the weather has been nice. We have blowed bubbles, chased balls, run down hills and visited the playpark. But every happy time is bookends by whining and moaning. Monkey doesn’t want to go out while LM is chomping at the bit to get outside. LM is crying as she has had enough and is cold (will she wear mittens for more than 5mins? What do you think?) while Monkey is protesting like mad as now he doesn’t want to go home.

Fun outside, bookended by whining and moaning

Fun outside, bookended by whining and moaning

We have been to soft play with friends and both kiddies have had outings individually with the grandparents meaning I have had some nice 1 on 1 time with both of them. But the rest of the time there has been more TV on than I would like and I have been left questioning being a stay home mum. What am I doing? Why am I doing this? It is so so so hard sometimes and weeks like this I really don’t feel happy or fulfilled. So I start thinking about going back to work. But despite how hard it is at the moment I still don’t like the thought of sending LM to nursery. Of someone else doing the things I feel I should be doing with her.

I have utmost respect for working mums and I have no judgement on anyone for sending their child to nursery so they can work. I just can’t seem to extend that to myself for some reason and feel like having made the decision to be a SAHM that I would be failing if stopped now. I think it would be different if I had a job I loved or a career I wanted to further, or if financially I had to work. But I don’t, we are so fortunate that we manage on one salary (we do have to be sensible and a bit careful with money but we do fine) so I guess it just feels wrong to think about going back to work just so I can escape my children!

Its a difficult thing to balance, the needs of me vs. the needs of them. I know that this has been a particularly tough week and I know that when Monkey is back at preschool and everyone is well again things will be different. I hope so and this may juts be a blip… But I am questioning my choice a lot at the moment and wondering whether it is still the right decision for me. In truth I have no idea. And I have no idea what the solution would be as I am so conflicted between wanting something more for me… And wanting to do everything I did for Monkey with LM.

It is such a short time when they are small and yes it is tough but do I want to throw away this opportunity? Surely I have years and years ahead of me where I can do things for me, is it
really too much to focus on their needs for another year or 2? That sounds perfectly reasonable until I have two children fighting over me and my hair being pulled….

I know it doesn’t have to be an either or situation and I could work part time but then it is whether the costs and negative would outweigh the wages I would earn or the perceived benefits. The questioning continues..

21 thoughts on “Questioning being a Stay at Home Mum

  1. I cringed at your bath painting, lol! I do understand how you feel though, but I can tell you from experience it’s a two way thing. When my eldest were little I went back to work and although I loved working and the extra money it gave me I really felt like I was missing out on my kids childhood. Then I had a break of 16 years before having more children and this time I’ve been a SAHM which has been great, but I really miss working and the extra money and chance to be someone other than a mummy! Honestly, you have to follow your heart but if I were you and working was not a necessity, I’d leave it for another year or two, I’m sure you won’t regret it. x

    • Thank you, really interesting to hear your opinion as you’ve done it from both sides. I don’t know what I will do but I probably will try and stick it out a bit longer! Xx

  2. I can feel your frustration and exhaustion all through out your post. I remember what it was like when my daughter was her age. I feel your pain. The good news is, half-term break is over, well apart from the weekend. The boys will be back in school and hopefully you’ll manage to have a bit of space and time for yourself, even if it’s just a quick break in the bathroom! 😉 #wotw.

  3. Gosh you sound shattered! Illness makes everything harder and I agree that the benefits outweigh the rubbish when it comes to being a SAHM. I remember feeling that I was getting lost in the mix, wondering where ‘me’ had gone. These things will pass, give it time and enjoy the lovely times with your pair of ‘angels’!

    • Thank you and good to know I’m not alone in feeling this. I hope it does pass and that I can enjoy it a bit more in the meantime. Xx

  4. Going back to work wouldn’t be bad Hun as is for you. I often wonder if I’m missing out but the grem has a such a good time and does so much at nursery!! I then feel on my days with her (if I’m well) we have fun as I’m not frazzled. You do an amazing job with two at home all day. I know I couldn’t and not ashamed to admit that. It would be so hard to entertain them without feeling guilty for being stressed or bored myself. I’d have a think. You are important too and need to refresh xx #wotw

    • Thanks hon, just find it so hard to think about what I need and I don’t even know what job I would do that would make me feel like I was doing something worthwhile enough to take me away from them. Still thinking though! Xx

  5. It is hard, and tough to entertain the two of them. I know that, I understand where you’re coming from and the no time at all to yourself. But it does also get easier as they get older. My two aren’t that much older than yours but it feels like a lifetime in some respects as they do now play well together and we’ve had a lovely half term. I well remember my boy doing every single thing that you’ve mentioned LM does there – the drink spilling was sooo annoying, and no, I didn’t find a way around it he just grew out of it – and whilst I still have plenty of challenges, it is easier now. All of that said, though, you need to do what makes you feel best and cannot consider going to work as a failure as a SAHM, no one would see it that way at all and you have been a SAHM for several years! It may make you happier and in turn enable you to enjoy the time you have with your kids more. Do what you need to do xx Thanks for sharing with #WotW

    • Thanks lovely, I do think ofyself as that couple of years behind you and it does give me hope that it will get easier. There will always be challenges but you are able to do things for you too, and I look forward to those days! Xx

  6. You sound very tired and a little over whelmed at the moment. Having a clingy young one is very hard. Peanut was a velcro baby and never left my hip and it was tough. Even now that they are all older I have days where I just want to jack it all in and get a job to escape from them for a few hours. The feelings do pass though. Don’t make a decision on a bad day. Think about it over a few weeks and you’ll make a choice that works for you all. I think whether we are a sahm or a working mom we always question our choices from time to time but we can only do what works for us and noone else x

  7. Thanks for sharing this post with us. It’s true that when you are poorly things seem a lot worse. Hold on in there, take your time, write out your thoughts and you’ll be fine whatever you choose. #wotw

  8. We are at this stage with Little E but she scream with it. She is so vocal and feels like she moans about everything. I work from home so have to juggle but really miss escaping to the office to be me. I feel I have lost myself since becoming a mum. I do feel social media really puts pressure on us all as mums. I must admit I saw your photos of the painting earlier in the week and thought ‘why aren’t I doing that with my children, I must be rubbish etc’. It just shows you how photos alone don’t give you the full details of the ‘fun’. Ethan is normally always on the iPad so you can imagine the guilt that goes with that. I have started to try to change my thinking that the most important thing is that I’m here for the children, I don’t need to be a crafting expert as part of the package ;0) x

    • Haha yep social media lies! I nearly wrote how wrong it had gone when I shared that pic but decided to write a post instead… But I then didn’t get time and with more things going wrong that post became this post! I feel really lost sometimes and much as I adore my kiddies I really don’t feel like I am doing a good enough job a lot of the time. Definite way too much pressure via social media! Xx

  9. Don’t be too hard on yourself. I couldn’t stick my toe outside the room without Madam screaming her head off when she was little. But sometimes you have to and if they scream well then they scream. As long as she’s safe wherever you put her before you make that visit to the loo or make that cup of tea then she will be fine. I don’t mean it to sound hard but needs must. Even now mine are 11 and 8 I still lock my self in the loo for 5 minutes peace regardless of whether I need to go or not!
    It will get better though. Honest 🙂
    I gave up work after Sir and when Madam started YR1 I got a job as a Dinner Lady (more kids!) but it gets me out of the house, I get the holidays off and it’s only an hour so no child care required 🙂 Like others have said don’t decide on a bad day.

  10. Ohhhh the whining. Z moans at everything right now and I keep asking him how he doesn’t give himself a headache from all the whiny voices he’s using. Throw in a Velcro baby and I can completely understand why you’re a bit fed up. Sometimes it’s lovely to just have a few hours to yourself, if only to have a cuppa in complete silence and watch a bit of TV! I know everyone’s circumstance and everyone’s solution is always personal to them. I hope you find your happy medium xx

  11. It is not easy as a mum whether you work full-time, part-time, run a business or stay at home. I have tried all 4 and they all have their challenges. The truth in my view is that mums don’t get enough support which leads to exhaustion one way and another which is not good for relationships in the family.
    I think craving you time is perfectly natural so don’t beat yourself up for wanting to be an individual in your own right as well as a mum. I struggle with that even with tweens and a teen especially now I home educate. Life is a mix of good and bad days and parenting is the same

  12. I understand exactly where you are coming from, our half term was very much the same and although the children were not poorly I was (with tonsilitis) and at times I just wished they were at school and nursery and felt really guilty for feeling that. Sometimes being a SAHM is really tough as you simply do not get a break and it does get on top of you sometimes, take some time out, maybe you could have an evening off with a friend or get a babysitter and go out with hubs and be you for a while. We all need a break from being Mummy sometimes. You are doing a great job especially attempting messy play and getting out lots when you are feeling down. x

    • Thank you lovely and sorry to hear you were so poorly! Illness can make being a SAHM so much harder. Thankfully this week has been a lot better though I am a little nervous about the easter holidays! I have been trying to have more time for me so I need to keep that up I think! Xx

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