When I went back to work after having the twins, I was pretty sad. It was a hard transition. I cried a good amount. Going back to work after having Bea has been a whole different story. How do I describe it? Marvelous. Fabulous. A Vacation. Peaceful. Quiet. Productive. Does that make me sound like a bad mom? I don’t even care. I am so happy to be back at work.
My maternity leave ended up being a lot different than my expectations. Originally, the twins were going to be in daycare while I would be home with Beatrice so we could do things like bond and snuggle and make crock-pot meals and organize the whole house. But God had different plans.
Six weeks in, we found out that our daycare provider had to reduce the number of kids she took and since Annabelle and Stephen were going to be leaving in November, it didn’t make sense for them to stay and take another kid’s spot. We found this out on a Friday where I had kept the kids home. So essentially I had no transition time to adjust any of my expectations whatsoever. We went from 0 to 3,000 in a matter of a 15 minute telephone conversation.
The last six weeks have been some of the most challenging, rewarding, frustrating, happy, sad, crazy, chaotic, wonderful weeks ever. I am so thankful that God changed our plans. I am thankful that I got spend so much time with my two year olds and my newborn. I got to know them better. I got to see the best and the worst of them. I got to enjoy their sweet laughs and their cute phrases. I got some great pictures and videos of them. I got to snuggle a lot. I got to sing songs and do circle time and color and go on play dates and eat a lot of Chick-Fil-A and go on walks.
I also got to pull my hair out when [Cheerios/Macaroni/Rice Krispies/gross food] got smashed into the carpet for the umpteenth time, when they touched the [speaker/DVD Player/telephone/iPhone/computer/lots more of my stuff] when they weren’t supposed to, when they refused to take a nap on the days that I absolutely needed that time to do important things, when I had to wrestle my sweet daughter into clothes that she didn’t want to wear, when they cried and cried for milk until I brought it to them and they threw it on the floor because they wanted juice, when they put syrupy pancakes in their hair, when we had to watch Sesame Street over and over and over until they discovered our Wedding Video and we had to watch that over and over and over, when they took their diaper off to go potty, sat on the potty, and then piddled on the carpet. You get the idea…
I called Brian pretty much every day in tears at some point. If he left work a minute after 4:00 it felt like an eternity. In the evenings all I could do was sit on the couch and stare at the wall. I felt like every single one of my senses had been overstimulated by a factor of 1,000. It was just really, incredibly hard for me.
Staying home with three kids is no joke. Props go out to all of the SAHMs out there. Whether you have one child or ten, you have a special grace that I don’t think I have right now. And more props to the daycare providers as well. I just. have no words. for the work that you do.
Before we had Bea, I was worried that we had made the wrong decision in having me to continue working. I felt like maybe I should try to stay home with my kids. At the start of the six weeks with all three kids, I prayed that I would be able to be content with going back to work (in case I loved staying at home), that I wouldn’t feel guilty if I didn’t like staying home, and that I would be able to say that I did well as a SAHM and could do it if I wanted to someday.
God answered those prayers. He also provided the perfect daycare provider for our kids in this season of their life - Brian’s mom. She is so excited to get to spend every day with her grandkids. She is patient with them. She is good at discipline. She doesn’t mind cleaning sticky fingers and she knows how to coax Annabelle into the cute outfits that I lay-out for her. I am so thankful that He knew that I would not be able to handle the SAHM job duties in this season of my life and that He worked it out so that Nana would be able to.
Coming home after day one at the office was awesome. We were all happy. The house was clean. The kids were laughing and giggling. I was fresh and excited to spend time with them. We sat and read and played and cuddled. And I didn’t even mind laying on the floor with them while they fell asleep.
I feel like I can honestly say that right now, me working is the right choice for our family and I don’t have to feel guilty or stressed or question that decision. And I am so so thankful for that.