5, 656 Snack Requests… Surviving a Day as a Work-at-Home Mom
White coffee mug with the text "I
My favorite coffee cup

[dropcap]I [/dropcap]am a morning person. No, really… I love mornings.

Ok, ok, ok.. In the interest of full disclosure, I don’t start loving mornings until about halfway through my first cup of coffee. That’s when I start to get excited about all of the possibilities a new day brings.

I wake up feeling like a superhero starring in a quirky work-at-home mom comic book tale of an ordinary life.

This is the time of day where I get my best work done, midway through my coffee until somewhere just before lunch.

Surviving the First Half of the Day

In a house buzzing with the beautiful chaos of so many little people, there isn’t exactly such a thing as quiet, uninterrupted work time.

But each new morning brings fresh hope.

I start each day at the dining room table, letting my coffee tell me beautiful lies about all that I’m going to get done.

I sit there cradling the warm cup between my hands, dreaming big dreams of productivity.

The Dream:

  • Drink Coffee.
  • Check e-mail & social media.
  • Write at least one blog post.
  • Happily paint as the beautiful sunshine streams through the window onto my art table and fills my soul with a glorious kind of overwhelming contentment.

The Reality:

  • At least one snack has been prepared and a minimum of three snacks have been requested, and then requested again-this time in a whine.
  • Several sibling squabbles have been diffused.
  • A few items out of reach of shorter humans have been retrieved.
  • A handful of ‘probably didn’t really need to ask one of your grown-ups this question’ questions have been answered.
  • A handful of insightful questions have been answered.
  • A train track has been built, and then rebuilt after a flare of drama consumes the 3 year old and he feels compelled to “break that track” to express his feelings.
  • Several word spellings are requested, several words are spelled to me, or the same word is spelled to me several times.
  • The dogs have been let out at least once, and the dogs have been scolded for excessive barking in a residential area and brought back in.
  • A minimum of 5 bath requests are responded to.

So, naturally, by lunchtime, that morning person is starting to wear off.

I start to lose that wonderful turbo boost of energy and inspiration that I get from the infinite hope and possibility that comes with the sunrise; it all starts to feel impossible.

The doubts creep in.

Most days I just float right through them… Then there are the days, that for whatever reason, I choose to entertain them.

Doodle of a person with a thought bubble with the words "doubt. fear. insecurity." and question marks around its head

“This is absurd,” the little voice in my head begins to nag, “I can not seriously expect to raise 4 magical little people and get my creative work done. Ridiculous!”

Overcoming Negativity {Putting on My Big Girl Pants}

I lose my superhero cape, slip into my “paint pants”, and grab a shirt from the pile on the floor. It doesn’t smell, so it must be clean.

I find my way to the other side of “Oh-My-God! I can’t do this. This is impossible!”… I remind myself that I am doing it, obviously.

I did it yesterday, and the day before that, and the day before that… And on and on.

Just like that.

I wake up a superhero and by the end of the day, I might just be an ordinary human… But humans aren’t so bad, really.

The end of the day is proof that I am doing it.

There are many moments where the to-do lists are threatening to consume me.

Moments where the kids are driving me batty with their antics, or to distraction with their adorable selves.

Moments where I feel like I can not possibly get it all done.

Moments where I feel like I haven’t gotten anything done.

Sometimes it’s too easy, in those moments, to lose sight of it all. It’s easy to forget that if I just breathe deep, exhale slowly and push forward, it gets done.

Sure, we all have those days where we look at the clock and it’s already 3pm and not a single thing has been checked off of our to-do list. It’s already time to start thinking about dinner, and the one that naps is just waking up— and we’re screwed.

Nothing’s gonna happen today and that’s cool.

Some days just roll like that.

So I may as well relax, take a load off, kick up my feet and enjoy 5 minutes of quiet in my mind (probably not in my house, but yay! for the powers of abstraction!)… And remind myself that tomorrow is a new day.

Another sunrise that whispers of hope and possibility.

I just need to remember…

Some days I manage to slip into bed with my cape intact.

Some days I don’t.

Some days I effortlessly juggle 30 things.

Some days I drop the ball.

Life is a beautiful balancing act, and things will all fall into place.

All I have to do is show up everyday to do the work; to love the wee ones; to let my light shine.

And on the days I’m sure it won’t work, I have to remind myself that it all gets done, somehow.

It must be getting done, because I’ll wake up tomorrow and still be doing it.