Today is the 2 week mark of leaving my job to be a full-time, stay-at-home wife & mommy (or homemaker as a I wrote on a form last week!).
Here are some of my observations so far from my (admittedly brief) time at my new “job”:
1) I feel better physically & mentally than I did when I was working: i went for a massage last week and realized that I hadn’t felt pain from sitting, using the computer, etc all week. This week continues to be good (other than pregnancy-related discomforts!). I have more energy (usually) and feel like I can focus more on what needs to be done.
2) I get stuff done, but I don’t feel stressed out about it: I wouldn’t say that I’ve had an overly productive 2 weeks- I’ve spent a lot of time on the computer, have read, and taken lots of naps. BUT- I’ve still been able to get my to do list almost done every day and things are slowly starting to look better.
3) There will always be more to do: I’ve decided to try to establish a routine that will help me stay on top of things but not be overwhelmed. Following some of the FlyLady’s ideas, I’ve been working to create a daily schedule & a 4 week rotation of deeper cleaning. This week, I needed to clean the mudroom, the porch, and the kitchen. The first 2 got done, and I made some progress in the kitchen, but could do more. I also picked up our other main living spaces in 30 minutes/day, so that things look okay, but the other areas got a deeper clean. It makes me feel better that it hasn’t been 3+months since I swept the porch! The advantage of this plan is that I don’t feel guilty because I didn’t deep clean the other rooms- they’ll get their turn!
4) My productivity is tied in with the weather: We’ve had a mix of beautiful days and rainy days. On the sunny/warm days, I tend to be much more motivated to tackle my list. On the few horrible days we’ve had, I’ve been much less productive (Slept more, read more, was generally unmotivated to do things).
5) Being home without a car is okay, but requires some creative thinking: We’ve gone to one car and while I don’t notice it much, there are times that we have to think creatively. Thankfully, Mark has been working from home 2-3 days/week so that does give me some freedom. I also took him to work one day, which worked out pretty well. However, his work schedule isn’t predictable, so it’s hard to plan ahead, especially with things with other people (making a meal, getting together, going shopping, etc). I need to learn to be more spontaneous and hopefully over time his at home days will become a bit more regular.
6) I talk Mark’s ear off when he gets home: Although I worked from home alone for the past 15 months or so, I had a lot more interaction with people than I realized. Unfortunately, my chatting tends to start around 10:30 pm, which has made it hard for us to get to sleep early! or I bombard him over dinner with things that I need his thoughts on. Or I flood his email box during the day…I also talk to my mom quite a bit more (yeah for unlimited Canada-US long distance!)!
7) I have lots of new ideas for fixing up our house: As I’ve been cleaning, I see again all of the work that needs to be done- paint that is dirty ,things that are dirty, etc. I’ve also been thinking through new routines and how best to make things work (like- how can I have a laptop downstairs so we can skype easily when our office is upstairs). needless to say, I think there will be a lot of moving stuff around over the next few months and probably a fair amount of projects tackled this summer!
8) I can’t wait for spring/summer to be here! This winter has been REALLY mild, so we’ve been outside a lot more (I’ve been feeling good enough to take walks at least 2-3 times/week). But I imagine when baby is here, we’ll be outside even more.
9) I’ve cooked LESS since being home than when I was working. Go figure. we’ve been eating through stuff from the freezer. I thought I would be adding to the freezer, not taking stuff away! Freezer stocking starts in earnest next week though.
10) I wish that Mark were home more! We haven’t really taken time off this year and the weekends have been busy. I wish he could work 4 days a week, then we’d have a day each week to do projects together, and still hae Sat/Sun to rest.
11) It’s far easier to get up than when I was working. Again- not what I expected, but I find that I’m relatively more disciplined about waking up at the same time every day and spendig time with mark before he leaves for work. We did this before I got pregnant and really liked it, but with the pregnancy & winter, I found it harder to do the past few months. I think knowing that I can take a nap if I need it helps a lot, as does the longer daylight hours we’re seeing.
In many ways, these 4-6 weeks are temporary, as I’m sure that adding a baby into the mix will change things even more. For now, though, the transition has been a good one and I’m thankful we made it when we did!