Post-workdom Blues


I’ve been back at work part-time about six or eight weeks now, and I was finally able to breathe normally when I moved back to full-time last week. So came Thursday, aka “Should’ve Had a Chia Pet Instead of Children” Day. Oh yes.

It was five minutes to dinner time and I had a half-done grocery list on the counter (because I shop after bedtime to save my Saturday for more important things, like not sleeping in), three crying children and a dog that threw up something yellow hours ago on the carpet.

On the carpet — I have a house full of wood floors and he parks himself on my $20 IKEA rug. It would be more dramatic if I said it were an heirloom rug, but really, the annoyance level is the same.

And that’s not the point: I cried those “no, I’m not crying” tears that sound like I’ve got a runny nose.

I just felt like I wasn’t doing anything right, at home and at work. I was yelling at my kids, burning dinner, and I hadn’t even taken off my coat yet. Plus, I hadn’t finished my work at work, either. Fail, from sun rise to burnt eggs for dinner … because I’d forgotten to set out the chicken.

I’m just no Mister Rogers, right; I’m also no Martha Stewart, no kind of cook, no kind of do-it-all person, because that is a lie. I know that now. When you have three children, you can’t do it all, because there’s too much to do.

So as I was tossing toast and eggs onto plates while the kids watched TV in the other room and the baby was perched on my hip, I realized something had to change. I’m working on that, because I have no idea what that vague sentiment means.

But then A. ran in and hugged my legs. Done with throwing a fit because I wouldn’t let her watch “Caillou” on Netflix (I was OK with “The Muppets” on DVD, though), she grabbed on and wouldn’t let go.

“Mama, I love you.” And then she ran off.

I mean, a Chia Pet can’t do that, right? And yes, I realize she was just thanking me for letting her watch TV. But still. Still.


About Erin

Erin's a transplant Wisconsinite living with four people and a dog who strive daily to test her perfectionist traits. She and her husband, D., are learning to breathe normally again after outnumbering themselves in rapid succession with three girls -- A. (b. 2008), V. (b. 2010) and L. (b. 2012). She's constantly worried she's not doing it right (no matter what “it” is), but she's learning to act as if she has it all together by smiling and nodding a lot. She plans on taking her three kids out in public without another adult's assistance just as soon as never, and maybe not even then. She's an editor by profession, a writer by choice, and a new runner out of a need for an hour without someone pulling on her pant leg. She thinks few things can't be solved with some chocolate and peanut butter. Come to think of it, that makes running an appropriate hobby.

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2 Responses to Post-workdom Blues

  1. Traci Whiting May 21, 2012 at 10:26 am #

    I was having this kind of day today. Thanks for putting it back into perspective for me. :)

  2. Julie May 21, 2012 at 11:58 am #

    Those days are, unfortunately, more frequent than the days when everyone gets up, dressed and fed with minimal help, off to school/daycare/work without tears or yelling, and dinner was in the crockpot last night (and you remembered to plug the thing in before you left!)

    But those moments when one of the 3 monsters masquerading as your loving children slams into your legs, demand UP! and then smacks a kiss on your face declaring “No mama, my wubs YOU more!”? Those moments make all of the crap worth it.

    WOH-moms have it rough. So do SAH-moms - it’s not better or worse, just different. Congrats on making it back to work - it was always a high-point for me. Here, have a glass of wine and slip off that coat - the kids can wait 5 more minutes for their eggs and toast, and a mellower mommy. :)