It wasn’t until I threw myself into the circus of social media that I finally came to realize something. I am not alone in how messed up I am! Which is awesome. Sorry guys but it’s good to know I’m not the only one. But one crappy thing about being a stay at home parent is that we can all easily feel like we can never do enough.
We are called stay at home parents, so that means we spend all our time at home, which in turn means we have time to clean the home, right!? That’s the logic that many people follow, and if we are honest with ourselves that we follow for ourselves as well. So when we end the day with a home that is just as messy as it was upon waking, we feel like we failed. WELL WE DIDN’T.
So let’s change things up a bit. I’ve been trying to end my days differently. Instead of focusing on what didn’t get done, I make myself a list. Not a to-do list, because who needs that kind of pressure. More like a “What I accomplished today” list. And it changes everything.
I look at the messy counter tops and note that I made a weeks worth of dog food and a months worth of baby food today.
The baskets of laundry waiting to be put away are marked down as actually washing laundry that day.
Smiling children means I spent quality time with them.
A messy bathroom and pink rimmed tub shows evidence of a fancy bathtime.
Toys scattered on the floor means the baby had a fun day.
And a sink full of dishes means I fed my family, and hopefully even myself.
I’m someone who has some extra struggles in the housekeeping department, a shitty homemaker being one I’ll admit to… But even without any extra things going on, GUYS, this stay at home parenting thing is HARD!
Whatever we clean, whatever we fix or prepare, it all gets undone almost immediately. It’s the way of things and not anything to be avoided or agonized over, yet we let ourselves feel the guilt of it anyway. And honestly, we deserve better. Screw the rest of the world and their opinions, we need to think higher of ourselves because we deserve that recognition. We deserve to feel proud of what we accomplish at home, even if some days it feels like nothing.
So to all you stay at home parents who did “nothing” today: You did not fail today. You are doing a great job; and there may not be any parenting or housekeeping awards but I’m handing them out now. But like, in my head. Virtual invisible adulting awards. It’s a thing now. Trust me. When you feel like you’ve fallen behind, focus on the thing you did good with today and imagine me in all my mysterious internet stranger glory handing you a beautiful gold ribbon.
This is the hardest job ever, and honestly in these days it’s hard to feel the slightest validation in it. But you are doing great. And honestly, I wrote this because I needed to hear it too.