Stay At Home Mom Blues

[This post is written by Brooke] 

Have you ever heard of or maybe even experienced "Stay at home mom blues"? 

It's kind of funny, I knew nothing about it until I had gotten over the whole experience. A year ago in November, after finally getting engaged to my husband, I started to go down hill. It was a weird thing for me, suddenly my house was messy all the time. I had no motivation, and it wasn't like I was depressed or sad. I just felt unmotivated, maybe it was planning a wedding and being with my two kids all the time or I just needed something new, stuck in the same routine. I also felt so selfish, I mean I was able to stay home with my kids everyday, some moms dreamed of that. I mean heck, that was my life goal. I was still being a good mom and was taking great care of them but I wasn't setting a good example of how a household should be.

After everything with my wedding was done, I honestly woke up the next morning and thought to myself, 'this needs to stop now. I went into extreme cleaning mode and thought about what I needed to be doing differently to go back to being a happy stay at home mom and housewife.

1. Get Organized
I love being organized, maybe not with every little thing, but I'm the type of person who has a binder for everything, and when you open a drawer or cabinet in my house everything will be in line. Having an organized home helps keep you and your family together. Not every little thing has to have an exact place, but it's a lot easier to be on time for an appointment when you have it written on a calendar the whole family can see, or when you remember important papers for your kid's school in a specific place. My big thing is lists, every day I make a check list and I keep important things I need to remember to do by it. When you know where things are and what needs to be done, your life become less hectic.

Think about what you want organized the most and get to it! Look for organizing ideas or try some out. The dollar store is my go to for organizers, they have a lot of options- size and color wise for obviously very cheap. I get some at target too, and I've learned their bins in the kid's home section sell way cheaper than the ones in the "adult" home section.

2. Do something for yourself.
Being home with kids can be exhausting, not going to lie, and your first priority of course is always them, but you need to realize it's okay to take some time to yourself. Even if you spend half an hour during nap time just reading a book or take a bath once your kids go to bed. If you can find something out of the house that's about you, that's even better. I was lucky and found a fitness class that allows me to bring my kids with, yes they are still there and sometimes need my attention, but I get to talk to other adults and get in a full work out with an instructor. You'd be surprised how many things are out there for you to do.

3. Find ways to distract your kid(s)
Every mom knows it can be hard to get things done with your kids around, they want to help or they make a mess while you clean another one up, but finding or creating an activity that allows them to be busy while you're doing something helps a lot. Cleaning my downstairs was hard for me. My kids would wander and get into things they weren't supposed to touch (dad's man cave), so I got a children's table and set up a play-doh station. I also moved my son's train table into my craft room, he likes to go downstairs while I work on crafts because he doesn't get to use it everyday anymore. Obviously choosing what to do will depend on your kid and their age. For babies, plastic Tupperware can be a lot of fun to them, just lay it out on your kitchen floor if you ever want to get dishes done or even make dinner, only takes five minutes to pick them back up. Don't be afraid to get creative and think about things that distract your kid without you even trying.

4. Don't settle for a daily routine.
Now some people love to do the same thing every day so this may not be a problem for you, but to others it can be boring. For me I realized, it was easier to make a cleaning routine that contained a list of everything that needed to be done in the week; I'd choose what needed to be done each day by planning around our schedule. It was hard to have a daily routine for the same thing every week, I realized some days, I'd have more time, and other days I didn't. Try different routines to realize what works for you. Also, don't be afraid to switch things up or take a break. Have three loads of laundry to put away? Put one away then go do something else and come back to it. The important thing is getting it done by the end of the day.

5. Find something for your kids.
As much as it is important for you to be involved and do something for yourself, your kids need that, too. There are a lot of free options out there, or if you have the money, sign them up for something. I enrolled my son into 3k and both of my kids into swimming lessons. While my son is in school, it allows me to get some errands done easier because I only have my daughter to bring with. The library is one of the best free resources for activities; most of them have reading time or other ways to involve kids. Also, you'd be surprised how much kids love to go on nature walks (it's good for you, too). Check out your city's website for list of things to do with kids. This is important for kids who stay home all day. Most things you involve your kids in allows them to socialize and see other kids, and can make transitioning to school easier. Getting your kid involved in activities is a great gift way for them to meet other children and learn socialization skills that will help them when it's time for elementary school.

6. Reach out to other moms.
Find a mom friend or mom group. If you have more than a mom friend, that's awesome. It took me a long time to find the right mom group, I felt that most of them were about judging parenting techniques and bringing each other down. I got lucky and found a mom group that's about being healthy for you and your kids. I met other moms and on Facebook. We shared great things like recipes, parenting tricks, and fun outings for the family. I feel incredibly lucky that I was able to find such a positive group; if you keep looking you can find one, too. Take the time to figure out a common interest that connects you with another mom; if you see a parent on Facebook or Instagram who you think you'd get along with, don't be afraid to message or reach out to them! Parenting can be a lot easier when you have someone to talk to who relates to you.

7. Realize this is your job.
This is the harsh one; although you may be feel tired or exhausted it's your job to take care of your home. It's no different than working outside of the home. That may mean realizing it isn't for you; not everyone can stay home all day with their kids. And, that isn't a bad thing! You need to think of solutions for the problems you are facing. Don't be afraid to ask for help if you feel overwhelmed. It's okay to take a break or ask your spouse to put the kids to bed so you can get yourself together. Being a mom is a job. There will be good and bad days, so they need to respect that just like you would if they came home tired from a long day working outside of the house.

These are just some things/tips I did to get my life back in order. Hopefully you notice a change and can get out of the blues like I did. Even if you try one thing at a time, it can help. XO Brooke

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