Balancing the roles of a wife, mother, employee & person.
I have come to almost the end of my MBA program. I can not believe that I am only 4 classes away from completing my degree. It feels surreal. Our oldest will be 5 years old next month, and will be starting Kindergarten this fall. Has it really been 5 years? Hard to imagine that its has been that long. Along with changes to our living situation and daddy working swing, the boys going to daycare 4 days a week and my schooling almost being completed, this young momma is very overwhelmed with everything. We are still working on potty training both the boys.We have had great success on peeing standing up, it is the pooping and night pees that are still and issue. Our almost 5 year old still wears pull ups to bed, as he does not wake up to use the bathroom on is own during the middle of the night yet.
Behaviors are a different story though. As our lives have been more stressed, not only the schooling, but still living paycheck to paycheck, we are unable to do as many fun actives with the boys as we would like to do.
Oh and with this being our oldest 5th year of life, it also marks 5 years being married, and 5 years since my grandfather passed away.
Many important life events happened 5 years ago. But it will never be the same, and to tell you the truth there are days were I just want to give up and stop trying to be super mom all the time. My children are my life, but then other items come up and I feel like I put them on the back burner, along with my marriage. I’m praying that this feeling will dissipate when classes are over.
Anyway, speaking of classes again, anyone who is readying this, would you mind taking a quick 1-2 minute survey for my MBA capstone project? As this project will take place over 7-8 weeks I am unable to conduct proper market research on certain habits.
Thank you in advance,
Below is a post written on 04/2014 – nothing current has prompted the words below.
I haven’t written in a while. I have had the tendency to just build and build my frustrations inside. And make sure I don’t let it out on the innocent. But it’s been hard lately. Last week was horrible. I went to bed (after putting boys to bed) feeling like the worst mother in the world. I was tired, and cranky and had been literately been screaming inches from their little faces. I am a horrible mother. And for some reason I can’t change that. I only way I can is by walking out and leaving during the time that the husband is home. But this isn’t far on him or the boys. They need to see daddy and mommy together and not separate. I hurts my heart knowing that I just can’t do it anymore on my own. And that’s how it’s felt for a while now. And now I’m throwing in the mix more college. I’ve been accepted into an MBA program (one day a week, after work), and should take about 2 years to complete.
I don’t know. There are so many things I would change about how we live there isn’t enough time to list them all. I just didn’t think my life (our lives) would turn out this way.
Below post was written on 02/23/14. Nothing has prompted the writing of this post, however I did update the time table below for current events.
My mom came over a couple days ago to check up on us and visit her grandson’s. She doesn’t stop by much, so it was nice to see her. However once she saw what all I had going at home, she asked a question that’s been bugging me for a bit now. Where did “you” go? As in I have no time to just be myself. Not a mom. Not a wife. Just me. I don’t think I’ve seen myself for awhile now. Maybe it’s selfish that I want to know who I am again. Just I think it would help me keep my sanity. Below is how my days work during the week:
- 5:00 AM – first alarm goes off
- 5:15 AM – second alarm goes off, if not already up, then get out of bed, and try to throw an outfit together that will work for work
- 5:30 AM – third alarm goes off, if I’m not packing my lunch or getting clothes together for boys’ daycare bag at this time, then I’m running behind
- 5:45 AM – wake up boys, change them and get them dressed
- 5:55 AM – fourth alarm goes off, I’d better be finishing up dressing boys and getting their shoes on
- 6:00 AM – should be heading out the door to start the day
- 6:10 AM – drop off boys’ at daycare
- 6:45-6:55 AM – arrive to work
- 7:00 AM – work day begins
- 3:30 PM – log off computer at work
- 3:35-3:40 PM – gather things to go home, and start driving home
- 4:20 – 4:30 PM – arrive at daycare to pick up boys
- 4:45 PM – arrive home, or head to store, depending on if I have money
- 5:00 PM – early evening snack, pick up table, do a little dishes, maybe start a load of laundry, decide what’s for dinner
- 6:00-6:30 PM – start cooking dinner
- 7:15 PM – clean up after-dinner mess
- 7:45 PM – start getting boys ready for bed, either bath & teeth, or just pj’s and teeth (boys’ only get bath every other night)
- 7:55 PM – 8:00 PM – gather both boys in their room and start reading books to them
- 8:15 – 9:00 PM – try to convince boys it’s “night-night” time and that they need to go to bed, dosing while they attempt to fall sleep, could happen anytime between 8:15 – 9:00 PM
- After boys to go bed, maybe take a shower if early enough
- I crash about 10 PM ish. Sometimes I have a hard time falling asleep
- Some nights boys’ (one or the other or both) will wake up and need me (if daddy isn’t home yet) to soothe them back to sleep
- Sometimes daddy will wake me up when he gets home if I’m not completely asleep when he gets home
Then at 5 AM my alarm cycle starts chiming all over again. This is my cycle 5 days a week. And weekends really aren’t that different. I still wake up when the boys do, I just don’t have an alarm to wake up to. The boys wake me up.
Below post was from 10/12/2013 and is now being posted, nothing recent has prompted this post.
There are things that I did while growing up that have shaped who I am. The way that I am. The things I like and don’t like. And now as an adult and mother, there are things that I see that I don’t approve of. And it has to do with my up bringing. I don’t know if it just a change in times, or as life continues we rely too much on technology. Or what. Honestly I don’t care.
When I was living at home we had a routine. It wasn’t boring. It may have been tedious, but well needed. We need structure as children, and as teenagers. When we don’t get it, we assume that everything is ours. I remember a while board (which is probably where my love of white boards came from) that listed 4 sets of chores for the 4 of us to do. There was: 1) dishes, which included washing the dishes, putting away the dishes and wiping up the counter-tops (and maybe putting away dinner, I forget on this one); 2) Floors, which included sweeping and vacuuming all the floors once to two times a day; 3) Garbage, which included taking out the garbage (from every room) whenever it was full, putting recycling away, dumping the compost when the bucket was full, and taking all the garbage/recycling to the curb and bringing the bins back the next day; and 4) pets, which included making sure the water and food dishes will filled twice a day and picking up the back yard (every day to every other day). As kids, we all really didn’t like doing chore number 4. We had all these chores on a week rotation. Meaning we would do each chore (a week at a time) once a month. It was fair, and yes to begin with we did get allowance ($0.25 a day if we did our chores, to total $2.50 at the end of the week). If we didn’t do our chore for a day, we didn’t get allowance for that day.
Now I would assume (because my memory from my teen years sucks), is that in order for us to do something with friends, we had to do our chores first, and we weren’t paid allowance. Our allowance was being able to play with friends. This makes sense to me. This is what works. Oh and if you didn’t do your chores for the day, no friends. If you didn’t do your chores for a week, no friends for a week. Now I’m not sure if that’s how it worked in my family growing up. But that is how I’m going to try to raise our boys.
Food also wasn’t wasted at home. If you didn’t eat your dinner, you had it for breakfast. There were nights where eating was a fight. And if you didn’t eat your dinner, you couldn’t come down from the table. If you fell asleep at the table, your dinner was saved and provided to you for breakfast. Either way it was getting eaten. Of course, I’m again not sure if it was this drastic when I grew up, but that’s sure as hell as I’m going to try to raise our boys.
I hate wasting food. I hate wasting money. I hate wasting time. If something can save me time, money and doesn’t include wasting food, I’m all for it.
That’s another thing while growing up. We were told, only take as much as you are going to eat. Well sure, that’s easier said then done. Sometimes you get your plate all ready, pile it high with food, you sit down, you eat half or so of whats on your plate, and then your not hungry anymore.
There are rare days when I actually have a good day. Where the boys behave (as much as they can), I actually get good sleep, have a great lunch, work is exciting, and spend time (quality time) with the boys after work.
Today was one of those days. I woke up at 5 AM this morning when my alarm went off. I hit snooze and was able to power nap for 15 minutes, which was enough to have a very weird and gross dream. Then I was able to find an outfit suitable for work that was actually clean and matched. And I was able to take a shower to boot. All while the boys were still sleeping. Once out of the shower, I was able to make my lunch (left over stir fry, yummy) and make sure the boys’ bag was packed for daycare. Normally one of the boys or both would have woken up by now and would come looking for me. Not today. Today, our oldest turned on the bedroom light and they were both playing when I came in to change them and get them ready for school. And they behaved for the most part once we were heading to the door. Typically I have to chase both of them (and they take off in opposite directions) once they are dressed, before we can leave. Oh and I knew exactly where my keys were (yesterday I looked for 20 minutes for my keys, those are precious minutes when you are running late).
Drop off was easy at daycare. 🙂 I like easy good days. When I got to work, I was constantly busy. We have gotten so busy at work that I’ve been trying to come in on Saturday’s just to catch up with our many projects. I had a lot of visitors from our machinists and continued to give my manager updates on each project as I knew about them. Very, very busy day that I didn’t use the rest room until about 10:30-11 AM after getting there at 6:50 AM. And that’s a long time for me to wait.
After leaving work, I picked up the kids. The one downfall to all of today was that our youngest had a fever at school. They didn’t call because he just got it before I got there. I took them home, and they played together just fine. I did have to get after our oldest because he ran into our backyard and was playing in the tree line. Now I don’t mind him being outside, or even in the tree line when everybody is back there. But it’s different when you turn around from unloading the youngest from the car seat, and find your kid missing. Normally he’s good at walking up to the porch and waiting for mommy and our youngest to get to the door.
The boys played and watched “Planes” while I did dishes and tried to figure out something to eat. They also had a snack and ran themselves around the house. They did really well despite the fact that they wanted to hold the kitties all afternoon. They were very nice to them though.
Anyway, and bedtime wasn’t really a breeze. They had me read them 5 books, and the same book over and over again. Then we sang, I taught them “patty-cake-patty-cake?. The youngest fell asleep sooner, which is normal. And as I type this my eyes have closed a lot. It’s only 9:37 and I’m falling asleep while typing. Not a good thing as I don’t exactly know what I’m typing.
Anyway … I love good days. Very good days. There is a small window of time in which my days are actually this good. I just wish they would happen more often.
This weekend was my 10 year reunion from graduating high school. Now how the heck did that happen? I still think of myself being that little naive girl. But I’m not. The following is what has happened in the last 10 years since high school was over:
- Graduated high school
- Started at a Community College
- Still worked Retail
- Was single
- Turned 19
- Continued at Community College, refocused to transfer into 4 year college
- Still worked Retail
- Dated a little
- Started a long term relationship
- Went to Cancun, Mexico
- Turned 20
- Quit the retail job
- Started working at a Bank Call Center
- Started going to a 4 year college, focusing on Social Work
- Still in a long term relationship
- Went to Cabo San lucus, Mexico
- Turned 21
- Still going to school
- Still in long term relationship
- Still working at Bank Call Center
- Went to Lake Tahoe, NV
- Turned 22
- Long term relationship hits bumps, and fails
- Transfers to different department in Call Center
- Finally moves out of parents house
- Goes on Counseling retreat through College to Canby, OR
- Graduates with an BASW (Bachelors of Arts in Social Work
- Reconnect with first flame (slightly)
- Fly down to Ft. Worth with sister to keep friend company on way back
- Go on a few dates, nothing serious
- Become obsessed with friend’s roommate from Ft. Worth, doesn’t end well
- Turn 23
- Reconnect with old friends
- Meet the man who will become the love of my life, husband and father of my children
- Go to Catskill, NY with mom and sister for grandmother’s anniversary
- have boyfriend move into my apartment
- Sister moves in with me and my boyfriend
- Loose job at Bank Call Center
- Turn 24
- Have sex for the first time
- Start a new job that I loved
- Got pregnant with our first child
- Went on a family vacation with soon-to-be in laws at Long Beach, WA
- Great Uncle passed away
- Turned 25
- Gave birth to our first child
- Got married
- Grandpa passed away
- Turned 26
- Got pregnant with second child
- Gave birth to second child
- Moved in with Mother in Law, due to financial troubles
- Turned 27
- Job relocated to Illinois
- Was unemployed for 21 days
- Was contacted by a company in Washougal, WA for employment
- Accepted a great job offer, which I really love
- Went camping with Friends at the coast
- Went to Sisters, OR for anniversary
- Turned 28
- At same job
- Still living with Mother in Law
- Got accepted into Graduated school for my MBA (Masters in Business Administration), will start in August
- Will turn 29 in September
Damn. Looking at what has happened over the last 10 years, I really haven’t done much. I think that’s why I’ve been in such a melancholy mood the last couple of days. Ok I loved our reunion. But I wasn’t really noticed in high school, and wasn’t really noticed at the reunion. I skated by in high school socially. I wasn’t really part of any crowd. My picture didn’t even show up in the slide show. Granted, I didn’t submit any pictures, but I wasn’t in any in our yearbooks either, so I’m not surprised.
Seeing everyone from high school again, it made me realize, that I haven’t done much. Everybody else has lived and seen the world and lived their dream. Where was my dream? What have I accomplished in the last 10 years? Nothing. I have accomplished nothing. I’m mean sure, I’m married, I have kids. But … have I made a difference? Have I really lived? Maybe, maybe not. I just don’t want to go into my 30’s (which will be next year), and waste them. I think I really wasted my 20’s. I wasn’t focused. I wasn’t driven. I skated by.
Sometimes I feel as lost as I did back in high school. I’m not sure if that will ever change.
This is such a bad word. It doesn’t explain anything. It doesn’t give a reason, it’s just word. But for right now, it’s my life. With the husband working nights and the boys and I on days, I feel like I’m a freaking pack mule sometimes. The other times I feel like a rodeo clown and a banshee.
There are days where the boys are in great moods and therefore I am in a great mood. But their great mood doesn’t last until 7 PM, which is when other house dwellers come home. Then I get a stink eye. A grumble. A humph. A mumble under their breath of “not again”. Yes I know the feeling. There are days were I want to walk out the door myself. There are days were when I hear/see this reaction that I want to say “you should have seen them 10 minutes ago, they were angels then”.
I don’t have control over my emotions anymore. For no reason I feel like crying at times. And sometimes tears actually come. Those are the days that mommy broke. I hate breaking. I hate feeling and being a horrible mother to our boys. They are wonderful boys. Granted I feel like I don’t get to spend much time with our youngest. He is pretty quiet and has a sweet/gentle personality. Where on the other hand, our oldest is very much a boy. Very loud, in your face, “pay attention to me only” boy.
But boys will be boys. Our oldest is really into trapping our youngest and body checking him. I can’t believe they are both toddlers now. I no longer have babies. And in a less than a week, our oldest will no longer be a toddler, he will be a preschooler. He’s getting too old, too fast.
Now you all might think I’m crazy for wanting to do this, but I’m really thinking about going back to college for my MBA. Now you may ask where I will find the time or the patience to complete something like this. And it may not be the right time at all to be going back. Who knows? All I know is that I need one more piece to my application and I am done. And this piece is happening tomorrow, my interview. Now I may get in, or I may not get in. Either way, I tried to get in, and really that’s all that matters. Financially I can’t go back to school. Hell, we can’t get a minivan or move out on our own yet. So why am I even doing this education thing again? Again, I don’t know. I had a crazy idea when I was working for my past employer that I would pursue this idea, and even though I’m not with that company any more, I’m still pursuing it.
So I’ve been working for two months now, and the hours are great. But I’m drained when I get home, and I don’t want to be around anybody by the husband or our boys during the weekend. If there are more people that come over, I just don’t feel up to being social. So I hide in our room.
I need a break. We need a break. And hopefully it will come soon. The husband is working again. And I’m trilled about it. And I’m thank for our sitters, and their willingness to watch the boys on their days off.
I don’t know. Sometimes I look back on the choices I made, and wonder what life would be like if things had been different. I know it’s not good to play the “what if” game, but we all do. We should just live in the moment, and look forward to the future, and not worry about what happened in the past.
However, seeing as you can learn from your past and the choices that were made in the past, there is no way to live life without a past.
Friday night the husband was sore from standing all day, so when he asked for pain killers, I gave him the ones that helped him sleep as well. So he was out and took up the whole bed, the whole night, while I was awake and listening for little cries during the night. And as I was listening, I ended up staying up until 4 AM, and woke up with the boys at 7 AM. So 3 hours of sleep for me. I tried to take a nap after running around with the husband and the boys, but that didn’t happen. I was so tired, I couldn’t sleep. Then the same thing happened last night. I tried to sleep, and couldn’t. Then fell asleep, but got woken up because our oldest came to bed with me. The husband slept on the lazy-boy because his back hurt. I took our oldest back to his bed at 1 AM, but then couldn’t go back to sleep. Then I think about 3 AM, I finally when back to sleep, but kept tossing and turning. Sleeping alone sucks sometimes.
I’m suppose to go shopping today, but due to spending too much money yesterday, I know I won’t be able to spend any of my money. Our youngest is in 12 month clothes, and all we have are 9 month clothes. He turns 1 in less then a month. I’m trying to do the same things that we did with our oldest on his first birthday, but it’s not ending up that way. During our first birthday, I was able to create his invitations, and print them all. We had a themed cake. We had a projected slide show on the wall that played through the whole party. We had so many people come that our tiny party place felt very crowded. Now, I’m buying invitations and mailing them out. I doubt we will have a themed birthday cake. I was thinking something simple like small cup cakes. And I don’t know how we will be able to afford family photos.
The goal is to have family photos taken at each birthday, as one is right before Thanksgiving/Christmas and the other is right before St. Patrick’s Day/Easter. But as our photo place moved cities, we don’t know where we are going to go, or how much we need to save.
I’ve been feeling down, depressed, selfish, and pissy for the last few weeks. I really wish I could get out of this funk. What’s really bad is that most of it is while I’m at home. Sure I’m grumpy at work when people are grumpy at me, but that’s fine. Stress runs high when deadlines come close.
From my Grandpa:
- When you get up in the morning, head directly to the bathroom, take a shower and change into your day clothes. There’s no reason to be in PJ’s after you wake up in the morning
- Wake up at the same time every day, no matter if it’s the weekend or not
- Family is the most important thing out there
- When discussing money with family members (especially if borrowing/lending it) its’ between you and that person ONLY! no one else needs to you know your financial business
- Always take care of your elders
- Love and respect your InLaws, no matter who they are
- Tootsie rolls and Apple Carmel suckers are better than smoking
- Always tap into memories of your childhood to share with anyone who will listen
- Always carry single bills to tip waiters/waitresses with
- Levi’s are the only brand of jeans to buy
From my Grandma:
- Tea Parties are a must. No matter what the age, or gender. They are fun.
- Hot chocolate is the best substitute for Coffee in the morning
- Enjoy where you work. As much as you can
- Have dinner with your parents at least one night a week
- Sometimes going out to breakfast is a must
- Work in your garden whenever you can, it’s the best theapy.
- Baths are best enjoyed with a glass of wine, bubbles, and bath oils.
From my Dad:
- Take your family camping every year. It’s a great way to reconnect and unplug (a necessary thing to do in this time)
- The love of the smell of just cut wood, tire stores, hardware stores and the woods
- You can always improve something in your house, and try it DIY first. It’s a great way to learn how things work
- Cooking. Take your time. Enjoy the process. If using wine in your meal (to cook with) pour yourself some while cooking.
- Marry your best friend in life.
- How to balance a checkbook.
- Chores are a must for kids, they teach important life skills that are needed later in life.
From my Step-Mom:
- Patience. Everybody needs it, no matter who they are.
- Find something your passionate about and stick with it.
- Homemade/Handmade Halloween costumes are the best
- The only way to take coffee is with sugar and cream
- Summers are best spent outdoors. It’s where the imagination grows.
- Place-mats are a must when you have kids.
- Bisquick makes the best pancakes
From my Mom:
- Put your children first.
- Shopping on a budget. While grocery shopping, always stick to your list. While clothes shopping, hit the clearance racks first and only. Sales are your friend, they don’t mean your cheap.
- Going to garage sales is an art. You could always use what someone else can’t.
- Dream big.
- Take the time to know yourself, no matter how long it takes
- “Hi” is your best friend (using your hand like a puppet without a sock).
- Rearange your furniture at least every 6 months, but 3 months is better.
So this month is National Breastfeeding Month. It’s great how each month is getting it’s own theme these days. And all of it is “national”. That being said … mother’s should have NO JUDGEMENT on which way they feed their children. Yes, it is ideal to breastfeed. And children gain more antibodies from their mother, and prevents colds, and many other benefits. However, formula is equally good. There are formula’s out there that are made to mimic breast milk. And there are options out there if mothers want to breastfeed but can not – there are always milk banks. And yes they do exist.
My story on breastfeeding is this … with our oldest I had this plan to exclusively breastfeed for the first 6 months, and then up to a year. That was the plan. That was the goal. However, that was not reality. I was a first time mom. And no matter how many books/forums you read, or classes you take, there is no way to tell how your body is going to react to breastfeeding. Let alone if the newborn will latch properly. There could be a natural problem on why the supply isn’t enough. It could be TOO emotional for a mother to breastfeed. So I tried to breastfeed our oldest. I did ok I guess. The second night in the hospital was insane as I couldn’t sleep and was worried that our new son wasn’t drinking enough and wasn’t latching properly. I called the nurse every time he was hungry. Every. Single. Time. I swear this nurses station hated me that night. They sent in multiple nurses, as they all had rounds to make, and other new moms to check on.
I went home in a couple of days, with what I though enough practice from the nurses, that I would be able to make my goal. Yeah I was wrong. I panicked. I worried. Our son dropped so much weight within the first week home (and yes I know this is natural), but it was almost a concern with the doctors.
I breastfeed for almost a month. My milk finally came in and I was huge (and I’m wasn’t small to begin with). I was uncomfortable. And our son was breaking skin while nursing. By the time of his month check up, I wasn’t breastfeeding anymore. We had latch problems. We had supply problems. He wasn’t getting enough, the doctors said. They tried to get me to eat more. They tried to get me to drink more. But I’m not a water drinker. I never have been. I tried Gatorade. I tried milk. I tried flavored water. Nothing worked. I drink coffee, and that’s basically it. It didn’t change over my pregnancies. And it still hasn’t changed.
Personally I find nothing wrong with formula. Babies need to eat. If there is a problem with supply, or latching issues, then how are babies suppose to grow? There is formula for a reason. Not everybody can breastfeed. There shouldn’t be a “war” or judgement out there on how babies are fed. As long as they are healthy, loved, and cared for – it shouldn’t matter how they are fed.
With our second son, I had the same goal. I breastfeed for at least 6 months. I had the though process of “I had practice the first time, I’ll learn from it”. Well, yeah I learned from it. But our newborn was new. He didn’t know what to do. So helping him learn the ropes on suckling and latching on was hard. Actually it was harder the second time. For some reason, my milk never really came in the second time. I felt horrible. I felt useless as a mother. I actually grew depressed, and got the baby blues. It was horrible. I didn’t want to be around our oldest. I didn’t want to breast feed. I didn’t want to let our youngest to try to breast feed anymore. He was breaking skin and nipples just like his brother did. I almost …. ALMOST attempted breastfeeding in public. And I’m so proud of mothers who do breastfeed in public.
My sisters and I were doing holiday photos, and it was right before feeding time – yeah I know not the best timing – but oh well. And of course, right before we got called, our son got hungry. We didn’t have anything yet to formula feed with, and I had brought my nursing pillow to help. So I got it latched on and my bra undone, I got a blanket for cover, and was just about to lay our newborn down to feed … and our name got called. Now, if anybody else has used a photography studio before, you can’t just say “could you wait while I nurse?”. Nope , you have to use your slot when your name is called. So I snapped everything back up and boy was our son cranky through the whole hour experience.
What was pretty cool though is that while I was getting set up to breastfeed in public, I was sitting across in the room from an older gentleman, who was trying not to watch, but was watching (you know?). And as I was watching him, not watching me, he was smiling. I really wanted to ask him if he approved of breastfeeding in public.
And again – I could only last 2 1/2 weeks on breastfeeding our second. I was never engorged with our second. I felt like our second was not getting any milk at all. He dropped weight faster then his brother did. Though that being said, I was determined to try to make my supply greater the second time around. I got enrolled in a breastfeeding support group, that was sponsored by WIC. And even that didn’t help. Yes, I got pretty good at breastfeeding while in class, but I never really came prepared. I really needed a breastfeeding pillow to even attempt to breastfeed. We all have our quirks, and that was mine. I couldn’t breastfeed without my pillow. It was hard. I was never taught to use one arm as a cradle and the other to help direct the flow. I was taught only on a pillow – so that is what I used. If I didn’t have my pillow – well then I was sure to bring a bottle with formula.
There shouldn’t be any prejudice when it comes to how babies are fed, as long as they are fed. So I support every mother, in whatever choice they have made in feeding their babies. This also applies to how long mothers decide to breastfeed. If mothers out there want to breastfeed for 6 months great, if they want to breastfeed for 12 months that’s wonderful. Hey if they want to breastfeed longer then 12 months – I respect you, because teeth are involved.