I took these past 3-weeks to bond with my baby (Paid Family Leave) and become a temporary SAHM (stay at home mom). During this time I truly had a bonding experience with my son. He is growing so fast and is at such a fun age right now (7-months). I have a new appreciation for mom’s that stay at home vs. work a full-time job. I can truly say I had the best time at home because I made the most of my time. We took some fun mommy and me classes (mommy and me Pilates, Baby Whisperer, Gymboree, play dates at the park) all things I don’t have much time for when I’m working full-time, mostly because they are offered during regular business hours. We also got a lot of use out of our jogging stroller and Mommy really wore in her Vibram Five Finger shoes. My little brother graduated from Arizona State University, which included our first plane ride with the baby and he was so good (*tip for mom’s about to fly with a baby, make sure you feed them their bottle or breastfeed as the plane starts descending, that’s when the ears start getting swollen vs. take off). Our time together also included my 1st Mothers Day, day trip to a butterfly exhibit at the Natural History Museum with the Nash ladies, baby shower for a soon-to-be playmate, visiting Daddy’s work for the 1st time, and did a lot of exercise time in preparation for crawling (any day now!) Yes, we were busy and I think that’s what made the experience for me so rewarding. But the reality is most SAHM’s probably don’t do all of those things in the span of 3-weeks… And I’m not sure I would if I was a SAHM. I did miss adult interaction on the days where it was only the baby and I, and I’m sure my husband recognized it when I talked his ear off the minute he walked in the door. Plus if I stayed at home (and didn’t work) I wouldn’t have the funds to be able to enjoy the classes or trips I took during my time off. I honestly never thought I could be a SAHM until I experienced it these past 3-weeks. The only stress came from making sure the baby took enough naps during the day. I mean come on! That is the life, right?! But I did drop him off for a few hours at his daycare and I can tell you that the way he lights up when he see’s our daycare provider and the kids there really makes me so happy. He needs those kids and that play time just like Mommy needs her time at work to feel a sense of accomplishment and get in some adult interaction. Yes, this is the way our family works best but it may not be the way all families work best. I may be a tad bit jealous of my SAHM friends but 3-weeks is a vacation… Maybe if it was 3-months I’d be begging to go back to work?
I’m going to go off on a side note but I went to a play date with a few moms and kids from my mom’s group while I was off on leave… One mom asked if anyone worked and most mom’s said, “no” but I of course I said “yes” and continued to say what I did for a living and why I was off on this random Wednesday. I explained that for me its important to have adult time and the same goes for my baby, he needs time with other kids (people his age). I kinda felt vulnerable as I talked about my story with these women I barely knew. A few minutes before this, one mommy was criticizing another about not giving her daughter spirulina (sp?) for her digestive system problems and then going off on another about not using plastics. Yes, I consider myself a natural mom but there are some things that you cannot always control. I feel that we should use our opinions lightly and not judge others for the way they raise their children. I’m not going to stop hanging around these mom’s just because there are a few opinionated women. I will just tread lightly around them and focus my time on the women who aren’t judgmental. I joined this group because I want to learn how to be a better holistic mom and I’m the 1st to admit that I am naive to a lot of ideas. I don’t follow all the things I learn about but I am learning a lot about different opportunities that I could expose my son to either now or in the future.
Something that I have learned over the past (7) months is to not care what other people think especially when it comes to other mom’s. I give this advice to every new mom ‘Trust your own instict!’ Listen to others advice but know that you are going to be the best mother you can be and only YOU know whats best for your child. This goes for your family, work, and life too.
I know this blog doesn’t have much to do with fitness or nutrition but I do want people to know I can relate to both working and stay at home mom’s. Being a mom is a full-time job either way and I wouldn’t have it any other way!
Only a few days left of ‘vacation’ and its back to reality on Monday… Did I mentioned I’m so blessed? It’s all about the attitude!!! (Thanks JW – xoxo)