Last Monday I was really stressed because I have almost a hundred emails to sort through, deadlines to meet, and chores to complete. I was trying to focus to get as much work done as possible. And just when I’m right there in the zone, just when I get my momentum and it’s starting to feel like I just might be able to accomplish most of the things I’ve set out to do…that’s when my toddler start’s to throw a tantrum and screams from the top of her lungs: “MAMA, DON’T WORK!!!”
I usually have a few tricks up my sleeve to get around this problem. But for some reason, none of those tricks worked today. I tried working in another room (the out of sight, out of mind trick) but she kept banging on the door to the point that she starting hurting herself. I tried distracting her with food, toys, cartoons; nothing worked. This went on for hours. It came to the point I had no choice but to stop working and sit with her while she ate her snack.
And the funny thing was she fell asleep while eating. She wore herself out from all that crying.
I wish I could say that I have this WAHM thing all figured out and I have a fool-proof way of getting out of this situation but I don’t. Most of the tips, tricks and advice I share here do work most of the time, until they don’t. And as frustrating as it is, we often have no choice but to roll with the punches and find our own way of dealing with it.
This often means doing things we promised ourselves we’d never do once we become parents. Have you let your child watch TV for several hours straight? Guilty. Bribed them with candy in between meals? Guilty. Threw a tantrum yourself and scolded them into leaving you alone? Super guilty.
Being a work at home mom does allow you to see your kids more often than working moms but we also have to accept that we’re still working moms. It’s okay to be stressed because we have obligations outside of our homes that we do need to honor. It’s okay to feel bad when you end up having to resort to bad parenting practices in order to work. What’s more important is you try to do more good parenting practices than bad parenting practices. What’s more important is we have to always remember the reason why we became work at home moms in the first place; so we can provide for our families and be there anytime they need us the most.
Yes, I did give in to her tantrum but I was a little glad that I did. She wanted to hold my hand while eating her cornflakes. And while eating, she told me how much she liked cornflakes and her new friends here in our new house (she likes them a LOT). My baby, in her own way, is now learning how to talk and share her feelings with me. And when she was finally able to share, she finally relaxed and fell asleep.
My first serious mother and daughter talk. I wouldn’t miss it for the world.