More than fourteen years ago I left the corporate world to be a full-time mom to our seven children (though one is in heaven.) Our newest daughter had just arrived home at only five months old. Our oldest had just gotten married.
Being at home full-time meant that we would finally be less rushed, better fed, more healthy, organized and on-time to every appointment. I dreamed of completing creative projects and taking beautiful photos of our growing, adorable children. I imagined harmonious days of closeness, baking hot cookies to welcome my kids’ arrival home from school, eating home-cooked dinners followed by cozy nights reading books together before nodding off to sleep. Life would be so much better!
Reality, however, was different. I had totally underestimated the amount of attention my then four-year-old son would need (and deserved.) Taking care of a young baby took lots of energy as well. The house was more chaotic and messier with everyone at home all day. My To Do List got longer and longer.
In fact, now that I was home 24/7 I could see so many project possibilities every day. Up close they looked more numerous, urgent and necessary than ever. Yet it seemed like I was getting less done at home than when I was working 50 – 60 hours a week. It was hard to finish a thought much less a project with two young children needing care all day plus two more coming home every afternoon and two more independent children needing encouragement. I starting feeling overwhelmed and uptight just as I had when I was working full-time. I felt exactly the opposite of how I had imagined I would feel.
Being a research geek, I knew there had to be something I could learn that could help me. I looked in the library, in bookstores and on-line (the internet was just beginning to blossom.) After all, mothers have been doing this job forever. How hard could it be?
Aloha, Auntie Lynn