I’ve been asking myself this question a lot lately: what is wrong with me that I can’t seem to do the Staying At Home part of “Stay At Home Mom” (SAHM)?!
I mean, really. When I first left 10 years of working full time in interactive marketing/email marketing/SQL programming to stay home after the birth of my second child, I was just waiting for that SAHM malaise I’d heard about. Where you just try to fill the hours. Where you feel isolated, even. I was looking forward to some isolation! But instead I was committed to 10+ hours a week of social media work and I already had at least one active mommy playgroup. In a year I was up to about 3 groups, and spending all the nap times writing and scheduling tweets/Facebook updates for my social media job. With a newborn who didn’t actually decide to sleep through the night until she was 13 months old. I had to let that job go, but others have always cropped up.
Right now, I teach Megaformer Pilates part-time, I teach kids yoga part-time, I write for 3 separate blogs in addition to my own, and I take on random extra writing assignments and social media campaigns as they come along. Don’t get me wrong, I never say “yes” to anything that I don’t genuinely love. I say “No” more than I say “Yes”, nowadays. There are a usually 2-3 social events or writing opportunities that I forego each week just to get enough sleep to keep up with the things I have going on. I protect pockets of spare time intentionally. But I don’t protect all of them. When I find out that I have to provide snacks for my son’s preschool birthday party, it can indeed throw me for a little loop because I hadn’t planned for that.
But I guess the more philosophical question is: why can’t I just not work?! So I could do things like read books, watch TV, and clean the house in my “down time”? What is it that causes me to run into all these great opportunities that I love? This coming weekend, for example, I am going to spend all weekend at the Birth Without Fear conference on behalf of Green Child Magazine (check out both those sites! download Green Child on your iPad!) and I have been sooooo excited ever since I received this amazing opportunity. I can’t wait to hear about using essential oils during birth! Cloth diapering! Choices during labor! And be with a bunch of birth professionals! I am geeking out. And it will probably make me want to have 3rd baby biologically. Is it God that sends me these things? Or am I just unnecessarily ambitious?
And what about that imaginary 3rd baby? Will that be the point at which I’ll drop one or two (or *gasp* ALL) of my part time jobs? I honestly do not know. All I know for sure is, there are certainly no gaps in my resume. Maybe one day, there will be. But not right now.