How I Keep my S*** Together


Being a working mom is hard. I think that every mom feels guilty about saying it out loud, but there are definitely days that I feel like I am barely able to keep it all together. Somehow we all find a way to push through and keep going for our families.

While I was doing research before writing this blog, I posted on Facebook asking for content suggestions. A dad friend suggested “Topic #1: How do you survive??”  and I responded “Coffee, Pilates, and baby snuggles.” It may sound silly, but those three simple things really do help keep me mentally healthy. Two more important ways that I keep myself motivated are prayer and perspective.

Let me tell you about the roller-coaster morning that I had.

This morning I took Peanut to my cousin’s house because our babysitter is unavailable this week, and he was kind enough to agree to help us out. I drove the half hour to his house without feeling put out because I was grateful that I have family members who are able to take care of my son for me. As I was parking, I realized that I never packed the container of formula that was sitting on our kitchen counter. Of all of the things to forget, formula was the worst one. Anything else, my son could do without or my cousin would have for his own baby.

I kept moving as I thought about what to do next, but the only option was to go get formula. I went into action mode – I quickly explained to my cousin, asked where I could go, and hastily handed him my baby before running out the door. I drove the short distance to the nearest grocery store. I went to the baby aisle, and did not find formula! I felt defeated and frustrated that I could do something so stupid as forget formula for my infant. I texted my husband to call his dad about dropping some off, and then asked a cashier just to make sure that I was looking in the right spot.

She told me that the store carries formula, but they have to keep it behind the counter because it is so frequently stolen. Talk about putting things into perspective.

I purchased the formula, took the container back to my cousin’s house, kissed my son, and left for work. I work in a very casual, understanding office, so I knew that running late was not a big deal. In the end, I made it to work just a few minutes after my start time and everything is just fine.

 

A few times during this experience, I really wanted to just cry. I started to think about how I wouldn’t have to deal with things like this if I didn’t have to work. Sometimes, I really resent that I don’t have the option to stay at home with my son. Then I remind myself why I work so hard. I work hard so that my family can have the materialistic things that help us to live well. I work hard so that we can afford to take trips and make memories down the road. Most importantly, I work hard to set a good example for my son. I want to teach him that hard work and faith will be rewarded.

All of that being said, we live on a very tight budget, and sometimes I feel like all of our hard work isn’t being rewarded the way that it should be. The truth is that we live on a very tight budget because we have been blessed enough to take care of ourselves well. We own our home, we own our cars, we are paying for our educations. All of those things are much more important to us than having extra money to spend. The most important blessings that we have are the things that we didn’t have to buy – our family, our health, the ability to work and be self-sufficient as a family. God has taken care of us through each other, and sometimes it is the bad experiences that remind me of that.

In the scheme of things, having to run to the store to buy an extra container of formula is not a big deal. At least I am able to buy formula. I am frugal about my grocery budget, but I have always been able to feed myself and my family. That in itself is a wonderful gift from God. I thank Him everyday for my home, my family, and our health. Tonight I will thank Him for the ability to put food in front of my family without having to even think about stealing from the grocery store.

So that is how I kept my s*** together today.

I wasn’t a perfect mom, but I took care of my son. While I was at work, I took care of him by making sure that he was with someone who loved him. I know that Peanut won’t remember the day that I forgot to take formula to the babysitter’s house. I know that he won’t remember the day that I accidentally washed the dishes with hand soap (yesterday…) or the days that the house wasn’t as clean as I would like it to be. I hope that what he remembers is how much his mom and dad love him and how hard we work to take care of our family.

 

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19 thoughts on “How I Keep my S*** Together

  1. We’ve all been there! This last week I did something similar.

    My little one wouldn’t stop crying. The shrill something’s-really-wrong kind of cry. And he never cries for anything but hunger. So I fumblingly call the doctor and they said they can get him in in just about 20 minutes. I live 18 minutes away so I run out the door, grabbing the baby and the diaper bag. Baby is still wailing the entire drive, but finally passes out as we pull into the parking lot. According to the doctor, nothing was wrong (of course), so I decide to take him to daycare. On the way, he starts crying again, and I realize he’s got to be getting hungry now. I look and there are no bottles or formula in the diaper bag at all. We ALWAYS have it pre-stocked for situations just like this, but somehow didn’t. So I drop him off at daycare, starving and in a bad mood. I take him out of his car seat to see he also peed through his entire outfit. And the diaper bag didn’t have a backup outfit, either. Mom of the year.

    Ugh.

    But I’m glad it all worked out for you! Seems it always does, no matter how stressed we are at the time!

    • Thanks for sharing! Those days are definitely hard, but you are right when you say that it always works out in the end. 🙂

  2. Thanks so much for taking the time to link up to #sharewithme – I always think we just have to make it up as we go along and all we can do is our best on any given day. Hope you will link up again 🙂

  3. I was a working mom until my youngest child was 7, I remember multi tasking every thought and being frazzled and tired all the time. It is a lot to handle. Being a stay-at-home mom is a blessing, but it is a definite lifestyle choice and while I can’t have a vacation for a long time or have a big savings account, you can, there is nothing wrong with that. I think children benefit from both ways of living and are just as happy and loved. I wish I could have been home when my children were babies but I knew they were well taken care of and that was a blessing in itself. Thank you for sharing this post in the All for mamas Link Party Week 3 #allformamas. I will share this post on the facebook group page, my page, as well as pinterest and twitter

    • I’m sure that it only gets harder when you add additional babies into the mix! You are right – as long as a child is loved, the rest is just a lifestyle choice.
      Thanks for stopping by and sharing. 🙂

  4. Expectations are high on all moms , especially working moms.I’m I think we as moms put too much pressure on ourselves. We have to cut ourselves some slack. I’m a stay at home parent, did I let my 3 year old and 14month watch more than 2 hours of T.V. today, yes, oops. But tomorrow is a new day and I will do better. Thanks for sharing your authentic story! I think the more we share stories that are real, the more we can see we are all just trying to do our best for our families. Cheers!

  5. This is gorgeous. I am so with you there – I often forgot things when I was working full time. I once turned up at my mum’s without his coat, once without his shoes! It is so hard to remember everything. But you are rocking it lovely and like you say, you are doing what you do for him 🙂 Thanks for linking up with #TwinklyTuesday

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