Have you ever heard of the mommy blues? Me neither, but it’s something I have come up with after being a stay at home mom for the past four years. Something I used to laugh about prior to the past four years was how hard it was to be a stay at home mom. I thought working outside of the home was difficult but it is being inside with children all day that makes staying at home harder. I literally cannot have a conversation without bringing up my children and it makes me feel like my life is just really boring. I have a few tips for reminding moms that their life isn’t boring and it’s definitely not over.
Scrolling through Facebook has become something that only adds to my “depression” when it used to give me a way out into the world to communicate with friends or share something funny. I find myself becoming envious of people who write posts about how much fun they’re having. I have noticed, on the rare occasions that I get to get out of the house, that the last thing on my mind is posting about it on Facebook. One time, I went to a really boring birthday party and everyone was kind of feeling awkward and out of place, yet, everyone there was posting on Facebook about how much fun they were having, really? My point is, don’t let those posts fool you into thinking you are missing out. Even if they look like they’re having fun in photos, remember, a photo takes about one hundredth of a second to take. Never ever compare someone’s Facebook life to your regular life. Even if it’s a photo of them swimming with dolphins, remember, that we would all be a tiny bit freaked out at the fact that we were surrounded by creatures whose behavior you can’t predict, and that the kids make you feel like that every day.
For moms who don’t have close family nearby it’s difficult to find the time to get out and do anything without the kids. Even running an errand ends up being a daunting task because of how long it takes to get out of the house. I have found myself saying, no that errand can wait until tomorrow when their dad can watch them. The errand can wait, sure, but then you are dipping into time you could be spending with the hubby. Run the errand, get it over with, and move on with your life. You will feel better already, because now the mommy blues aren’t taking over.
Your house will be clean for about an hour, even if it took you four to clean. You were probably interrupted twelve times during those four hours, and your back hurts, and it’s messy again. Devise a mini plan. Tell yourself that after your done reading a magazine article or drinking your coffee that you will straighten it back up again. Once the kids are asleep, straighten up again, and just know you are not alone in that.
Part of the reason I feel blue is because of my appearance. I gain weight easily because of stress and because of having three kids (I’m guessing). For the most part I’ve kept it under control because I make sure I work out. Yoga has become my vice, it makes me feel like I’m in control of something, and it makes my back feel better, try it. Do your hair and your make up even if it’s for no reason. I went through a period where I didn’t want to put a bra on because it was too much work. That was bad, and only added fuel to my funk. Always put a bra on.
I used to be too embarrassed to invite friends over because of the noise, and the mess that lingers most of the time. Then I decided to get over and start inviting people over. Nobody cares about the noise or any messes because they’re already impressed at the fact that I take care of three kids. Anybody knows (even people without kids) that it’s hard work. Anything you do that is extra work makes you a saint.
Get a regular babysitter. A sixteen year old girl will be thrilled at earning 20 dollars to watch a few kids for a couple of hours. You need to get out at least at night once in a while. It will make you feel like you’re part of the real world.
Then there is always working. If you enjoy being a stay at home mom, and plan to do it for a while, you can get a part time job (15-20 hours a week) or even a temporary job. There are temporary agencies all over the place. It will help you to earn some extra money, while being able to spend plenty of time with the kids, and it will get you out of the house.