November 10: My “first” day as a stay-at-home Mom


I feel like today starts a brand new chapter in my life. I stayed at home instead of going to the office, and DID NOT WORK while I was at home. I worked as a Mom. There are so many things going through my mind right now, after the end of this day. Why didn’t I do this sooner? Will the novelty wear off? Will I become a better worker because of this time with my children? How will this affect me professionally? How will this affect me as a person? As a mother? As a woman?

I am now a part-time worker. I’ve committed to working 20 hours per week, for 1/2 of my pay. I will be in the office on Monday and Tuesday, working from home on Wednesday as as a 1/2 day. This gives me quite a lot of time with my kids. The plan now is for me to have the Twins on Thursday and Fridays; and I will have the flexibility to “steal” any of the kids early on Wednesday, as well as Big Bro and Red on Thursday and Fridays as well. Its up to me. It depends on how I feel I’ve connected with each of the kids and if I think a particular child needs more of me. I will have flexibility with the Twins’ current daycare provider to bring them in on Thursday or Friday if I need to.

From a work perspective, I need to be in the office for two days so I can still be in front of the staff and be part of leadership of the office. I will still coordinate and manage some of our forums, but I am still expected to sell consulting projects and continue to develop/cultivate client relationships. In terms of project delivery, I will serve more of an “advisor” or “director” type role, but for some projects I may have to do some more heavy lifting depending upon our pipeline and workload of our team. We are going to see how this arrangement works over the next few weeks and re-adjust if needed.

So how did my first day go? There were lots of kisses, hugs, conflict resolution, cooking, playing, tears (not me thank goodness), running, laughing, puzzles, hide and seek, diapering, playing outside and pointing to trees, sneezes, little hands pulling at my legs, cutting fingernails, snacks and holding cups with two hands, coloring, reading, chasing, sleeping, and cleaning. Some aspects of my day were magical. Here are some of the more special moments:

  • I woke up to Red in our bed, singing to herself (or to an imaginary friend?) the ABCs, and then asking him/her if they knew the ABCs, and then her singing softly again. Her voice is like an angel. The way she sings is so sweet. The way she uses inflection when she asks her questions like a little mommy is just too sweet. I really need to capture this on video.
  • I dropped of Big Bro with all of the kids in tow. We parked the van and together crossed the street all holding hands. Once we got to the line I think Big Bro got a bit embarrassed so he came up to me and said that it was time for me to leave. My heart. He always gets a bit anxious when his school and family worlds collide – and I think his gaggle of siblings was a bit much for him. So I honored his request and we walked to the car.
  • I walked to the car with the kids slowly. I was holding Twin Crazy’s hand, and Twin Husky’s hand. Red had Twin Husky’s other hand. We walked slowly. We took our time. There was no rush. We took the crosswalk. I explained the concept of a cross walk to them. I looked up to the sky as I walked with these little hands in my own and I took deep, deep breaths as we walked along. I couldn’t help but smile. My babies are with me. I am not rushing for anybody or anything. We are together. I made a game out of the walk, stopping at each car parked along the road and asking “Is THIS our car??”, and the kids would say “Nooooooooooooo.” After two or three times they understood that I was joking and they all started laughing. We did this for 8 or so cars until we found ours. The kids all listened well, held hands, held still on the sidewalk as I was getting kids inside. I can handle this on my own. I felt strong and liberated at that moment.
  • At snacktime, Twin Crazy and Twin Husky each sat at their little table with their feet hanging down. I sat on the floor next to them, talking to them. Grabbing their feet. Commending them on their ability to drink from a REAL cup with both hands. At one point Twin Husky and I grabbed eye contact and he would not look away. I just sat there staring into his eyes. He still would not look away. He had a big grin on his face. He reached out and touched my eye, my nose. He smiled and laughed under his breath and leaned forward with his head so that his forehead touched mine. I thought this was so sweet. How this interaction happened between us without any words. Just loving looks, and gestures. I couldn’t help but cup his face in my hands and kiss the top of his head. It was a great moment between us.
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  • At about 10 AM both seemed a bit tired; I picked up Twin Husky and he immediately put his head down on my shoulder and his little strong arms engulfed me – his little hands grasping at my shoulders and shirt – holding tight. Cuddling in deep into my body. I swayed with him to the music for about 10 minutes, holding his head and neck like he was an infant, feeling the weight of his body on mine, feeling his cheek against mine, feeling him breathe. After 10 minutes of that he started to struggle away and was ready to play again.
  • When they were going down for their naps, I heard them playing and laughing and cracking up. They do this on weekends too but usually we are also dealing with the other kids so I never really stop to listen. This day I had the opportunity to listen to these twins. How they talk to each other. How they interact and crack each other up. How they misbehave by not going to sleep. I opened the door and both were standing up and immediately dove down into their individual cribs. It was too funny. I also caught a movie of it but am having trouble uploading it to this site.
  • After their naps I could tell that each was having a hard time and were not waking up easily – they did not seem refreshed. So I carried them downstairs and sat with each of them on my lap on a big leather rocking chair and cuddled with each of them, rocking back and forth, not saying a thing. I don’t think I’ve ever done this with both of them. It was awesome.
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  • In the afternoon I gave them some juice and after 5 minutes both of them were running around and I was chasing them and crawling after them and they were hiding and cracking up. It was so much fun. I would kiss their bellies after “getting” them and they would let me and then run away laughing. This went on for 15 minutes or so and I was exhausted afterwards from laughing and chasing.
  • There was so much more that happened during the day – and cute things that happened with Big Bro and Red too, but for now I just want to capture the more magical moments – those that were new to me, or those that just touched me in some way.

    It was a great day.

    Tomorrow is Veteran’s Day and schools are closed. I’m planning on bringing all of them into the city, stopping by work to say hi, and maybe taking them to a museum. We’ll see how it goes. I’m looking forward to it.

    Til tomorrow –
    – Mama K

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    Comments

    1. You have attained my dream world. I aspire to have a 20 hour work week with time to spend with my kids. Sounds like Utopia! Congratulations

      • THank you. It really feels wonderful, so far. It is a bit of an adjustment though. I feel like I REALLY need to recalibrate my expectations of myself for work. I feel the need to really pack in a full week’s of work into only 2.5 days which is unrealistic; I keep thinking of all the things I need to get done at work in my limited time which is making me more efficient, but also adding complexity. So far so good – feeling happier already!!

    2. I’m so happy for you. I know this was not an easy decision by any means. Enjoy your babies!

      • I’m enjoying them so much – so sweet. I’ve already noticed a difference with Twin Husky. He used to be such a daddy’s boy but I’ve noticed lately that he really calls for his Mommy even if it is for him to show me something. I love it. I feel like the biggest difference so far has been a strengthening of bond between he and I.

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