Many of you have been messaging to ask how my first week as a Stay at Home Mom (aka SAHM) went. Well, staying home alone with Elijah is definitely not something completely new to me. I was alone with him from about week 2 to 7, when Justin worked both a morning and an afternoon summer job. While he was away I had plenty time to be with Eli, and lacking any family here in China, I was without help for almost all of that time. One advantage was that Justin got to come home between his morning and afternoon jobs to have lunch with us. This broke the day up nicely, so we didn’t ever miss him too much. What followed was four weeks of daddy being home every day — we thoroughly enjoyed that time. This past week our high school opened for the new school year, and he returned to work full-time. On most mornings, we are only getting up as Justin walks out of the door and heads off to work.
I thought it was an odd coincidence that Elijah had always been a very easy baby until the week that Justin returned to work full-time. I almost felt like he knew Justin wasn’t here and it bugged him. There’s no denying that this past week was a rough one for our little man. He was feeling needy and rather moody between the hours of about 11am until 5pm. Yup, around the time that Justin arrived home, we would go from crying and fussing to smiling and coo-ing again. I was sending Justin videos and pictures throughout the week, so he knew that I wasn’t making any of this up. Elijah really was miserable for the majority of the hours that he was gone!!
There were many moments this week when I felt like tearing my hair out, but that was mainly due to the fact that I had placed a lot of expectations on myself. Do the laundry, tidy the apartment, cook dinner, take care of Elijah, do blog posts, catch up on photo editing, sort out our cupboards, go for a daily run and do a workout… the list was long! Yup, this week I totally assumed that since I was able to do all of these things for the first 11 weeks of Eli’s life that I would be able to keep doing them. But alas, my baby had a terrible week and he needed non-stop attention from his momma. This was a week when I would have been grateful for a helping hand, for someone to pop in and say “do you need a break?”, or a grandparent who lived nearby and was ready and willing to look after our little guy while I went for a run, or even sat down for an uninterrupted hour to do a blog post.
I think that this week was hard because not only did I (we) have to adjust to not having Justin around, but I also had to deal with a very moody baby, while trying to meet all the expectations I had for myself. Evidently the week was a flop in my mind, but that’s okay because it’s not the end – I have many more weeks to accomplish the things that I want to do. Ironically, in my first week of being a stay at home mom, I actually worked for the first time since the day my contractions started! Justin and I are doing Saturday morning classes so that we can go on vacation next month. Our boss said that Elijah could come with us, so all three of us set off to work on Saturday morning. It was interesting working with my baby lying a few feet away from me, but thankfully be was being his usual self and he happily coo-ed and smiled in his chair while I taught 6 five years olds for three hours.
This week was not what I expected it to be, but I know that it was kind of a fluke because my son just wasn’t feeling himself. We all have tough weeks every now and again – even babies do – so I don’t mind that I didn’t get anything done. I love my little prince and I’m so happy that I get the chance to spend all day with him.
We are currently in a 3-day weekend and very much enjoying having daddy home with us!
Having Justin back at work everyday has made me realise even more than ever just how much he helps with Elijah. I am blessed with a wonderful husband!