Some days it is a challenge. Today was a challenging day. Unfortunately I can't call in sick.
I've been MIA as I've been struggling to put my thoughts together. I'm definitely having some trouble missing teaching and needing something to keep that part of me going. With Nick walking with my help and crawling (more into walking around with me holding his hands), I am spent. I can't find any part-time teaching jobs but I'm just itching to have a class to teach, grade papers and plan for. I keep coming up with small projects but the time to do them - I'm not finding it. I did think of a theme for Nick's birthday - it will be AIRPLANES! He loves ceiling fans so the propeller of the airplane - it was the only thing that I could think of that he had a connection with!


I don't want to pick up any more cheerios off the floor.

I don't feel like cleaning the floor twice a day because there are crumbs from the high chair on it.

I get food on my clothes and on the floor.

I don't feel like making a meal for Nick and then he won't eat it.

I don't feel like washing the dishes after breakfast, lunch and dinner, and cleaning up the high chair during my free time which is scant.

I don't feel like listening to him cry when he goes down for a nap.

I don't feel like going up to soothe him when he's screaming for no reason and standing in the crib when it is naptime.

And I don't feel like going through the same thing for bedtime after doing it for the nap.

I am tired, and frustrated. TGIF.

I've been very frustrated with the abrupt end to breastfeeding - I'm pumping 4 times a day and he nurses in the morning and gets a bottle of bm before bed. I had to get formula (yes, at 10 months wth!) for the other 2 bottles and have mixed with whole milk because at first he wouldn't take it. He hasn't taken a full bottle of formula yet, but it's getting closer to the majority of formula and less whole milk which he isn't even supposed to have till 12 months.

body crap
What really sucks is that with breastfeeding I've read alot of people go lose all their weight and then lose more than their pre-prego weight. I was hoping that'd be me because I was already 3 pounds up from my ideal / goal weight when I got pregnant. Instead from around 2 months on, I kept + 3 lbs that wouldn't go away. If any of you read Ironman Michelle's blog (I'm being very vague with what I post right now - more info later) and you know what she is going through, I am also in a similar situation. So with that, I am frustrated and not happy w/ my body right now, even though there has not been a day in a long time where I didn't workout. Isn't it frustrating to watch friends who can pound cheesesteaks, pizza, cookies and never eat a damn healthy thing and they look good? Maybe their insides don't look good? How will we ever know?

Fitting it all in
With the small projects that I make up - now Nick's birthday, also making up a website to sell things that I make, I want to hone in on them. I like to start something and finish it. That hasn't been possible. When Nick goes to bed, I want to work on my projects - but you also have to make time for your marriage, especially in this baby time where things are all over the place. I've had a hard time with the balancing act.

I'm in a swim rut, running has been going ok. I swam 2 sessions this week and have been doing some abs but still no lifting routine which I really need to get into and stop talking about it. I'm excited to get in some outside runs even if it is bitter cold. It's fun.

parting thoughts.
Days like today and I don't know how people do this stay at home mom thing everyday. There is no personal time and then you are supposed to find time to cook and clean too? I will take my job over this, at least I can have contact with adults, use my brain, and use the free periods to do some online shopping or things I want to do. In the end, every day isn't like today, but many days are challenging. And it is a huge adjustment to have no time to yourself.


  1. Hang in there Natalie! Some days are just much harder than others. Nick is so cute. I can't believe how big he is getting.

  2. Sorry to hear your frustrations, Natalie. I hope things get better!

  3. I can totally relate to everything that you said here! Things were really hard for me when Elena became mobile and I had to be 100% engaged in what she was doing all the time. It was both physically and mentally exhausting and I was so jealous of my husband for being off at work. I will admit that things are much easier for me now since Elena likes to watch TV. Her watching a few TV shows has totally saved my sanity. I probably let her watch way too much TV for her age, but since it makes both of us happy I am letting is slide.

    Staying home full time is such a huge adjustment and I totally felt like I went through an identity crisis (and still am at times).

  4. I've definitely been where you were when you wrote this. It took me a long time to see that all of those things you talked about were really great things, that I was serving my family, and seeing it as a privilege to take care of everyone and make memories for our family. Having that perspective makes such a difference, especially in the repetitive/mundane things that we do. But, with that said, I know it is not easy. I still have days that I just want to spend time by myself, with no responsibilities.

    Running is that much needed outlet for me. I don't know what I would do without it.

    I hope tomorrow is a better day for you! Hugs!

  5. Hang in there! I know how you are feeling with no time to yourself and just wanting a time-out! It seems like the days are just squeezed for every second and then you crash!

    I will be sending hugs your way! I hope tomorrow is better!

  6. Hey Natalie:
    Sorry to hear your going through a rough time right now. I can't help you out with any of the pregnancy related stuff, but I will say that you shouldn't be feeling guilty or stressed out about b-feeding. The fact that you were able to do it for as long as you have done is an achievement in itself.

    You sound a little burned out. From following your blog, you have an an amazing, but busy year and I always find that coming to the end of any year feels like the last mile of a marathon (haven't done one yet, but I can imagine!). Is there some way you could have the grandparents watch Nick for a night, so you and Bill could have a night away together? It's not much, but it might be a breather for you to have some down time.

    Hang in there - thank goodness for blogs! :)

  7. I can relate to a lot of this!

    I've been frustrated with the body/eating and nap times! Sleep just gets worse and worse. It's like he doesn't want to got to sleep unless we are right there.

    I know all of this will get better, we just have to wait it out!

  8. Wow, so many of us can totally relate. I am a mom and a teacher :) My girls are 4 and 5 years old, and I went back to work when they were each only 3 1/2 months old. I LOVE teaching, it is amazing how great I feel at work. But I am also stressed by work, don't forget about the lesson plans, the never ending piles of paperwork, the drama and the stress. However, having to get up and teach makes it far easier for me to get up and run, plus I am more controlled about what I eat because I am so busy during the day. Summers are rough, as much as I hate the paperwork that comes along with teaching, I crave it during the summer, just for something to do. I wish I had an answer or suggestion for you, but I don't. Just realize that the grass is always greener on the other side.

  9. Wow you are really going through a lot. I wish you had a lighter load.

    I must have missed a blog what happened to the breastfeeding? Did something go wrong?

    Personal time at home. I don't think anyone gets much of that with kiddos! With my oldest soon leaving for the Army and hubbs working away I will soon have some serious struggles to get any time. I am sure I will find a way just like I know you will.

    Good luck juggling it all.

  10. I'm sorry it was a hard day. You have a lot going on and you need to vent- get everything off your shoulders. its okay. if you ever feel like you need someone to talk to, email me and id be glad to listen!! it will be okay and i bet you will be happy with your decision- just take a little break. maybe you need a few days to yourself-- see if someone can watch the cutie pie so u can do things you want. :)hang in there!!!!

  11. First of all, you need a dog. The dog will always clean up all the crumbs around the high chair. ;) That said, then you have to vacuum everyday to pick up all the dog hair b/c your little one will get it all over his hands as he crawls around and them puts his hands in his mouth. Yep, been there.

    I think so many of us can relate to what you're saying here, Natalie. Go ahead and bitch about it. It's your blog. I swear, there are some days when I feel like all I do is clean up poop. "Hi. I have a college degree and I clean up poop all day long." Dog poop, cat poop, baby poop... not to mention our toilets. UGH.
    Anyway, give yourself permission to be pissed off. It's ok. Because it's going to be a while before it truly gets easier. I'm just trying to imagine having *another one* to deal with at the same time? Holy cow. I don't know how I'm going to stay sane.

  12. Yup. It's tough. One thing I will say is that it gets better. My son is 2.5 yrs old and we do more and that means I have more adult interaction during the day. I also do some freelance work, so I benefit from that. Although, finding the time to work on it is hard.

    It helped me to find other moms who were in the same situation so I didn't feel quite so alone and quite so shell-shocked.

    Also -- I stopped breastfeeding at about 10 months. By 11 months, I went to all milk, no formula (and I had run out of stored breast milk). My son had no problems.

  13. If I get what you're saying about ]what going on with you (same as Michelle), that's probably why your milk supply is down.

    There's NOTHING wrong with formula, you know? Soon enough he'll be on whole milk anyway.

    And yep, it can be like Groundhog Day with cleaning up after the little ones. Neverending day after day after day...

  14. the thing that sucks is that even if you teach, the cleaning is still there...and the marriage thing, yeah, so many times i want to work out more than hang out with my husband. but bottom line for me is, yeah, being a stay at home mom all year is way too hard for me! but hopefully this will be a short window for you and once you guys are done having kids you'll be back teaching somewhere part time and things will look up!

  15. wow. i don't even know what to say. i feel really bad reading that you're in a slump right now. if there's anything i can do, let me know!

  16. You are being way too hard on yourself about the BF. You did a great job!

    And I can't imagine how hard it is being a stay at home mom. That being said, is there any reason you couldn't go back to teaching next year. Honestly, I think daycare is FANTASTIC for Zach. I am jealous of the time I don't spend with him but I'm not guilty because he likes daycare so much and gets so much from it. And then, because I'm not exhausted from chasing after him all day, the time I do spend with him is quality time.

    And you were cryptic in your post, but are congratulations in order?

  17. Feel better!!!!

    great post, btw

  18. yes, yes, yes. I Know EXACTLY what you are saying!!! Some days are harder than others. But I promose as little Nick grows up, it gets easier. Of course you are faced with a whole slew of new challenges, but they are easier when the baby starts to become a little more self sufficient (and can talk to you!). *hugs*

  19. Hang in there! I know a bit how you feel, and I've only been home with Connor for 10 weeks. Some days I just go insane and HAVE to get out the door for a run/workout/shopping trip the second the hubby walks in the door! But, I'm headed back to teaching next week and I just know I'll miss these days I had to spend with Connor! It seems like there's no easy answer :)

  20. Our kids are 4 and 2 the end of January. My husband is a stay at home Dad and I worry aboput his sanity at times.. I am guessing that the Female hormones make some weeks harder than others, maybe that is what keeps my husband so tame.

    You have the HARDEST and most REWARDING job in the world. Stick with it and try to find way to keep your mind and heart in it.


  21. For what it is worth, you are SO not alone. Once my boys were mobile but without any semblance of self-preservation it was exhausting, consuming, frustrating, endless. This year, probably since Sam was about 3.5, I have seen a HUGE jump that gives me some hope. He is much more able to self-play, to not get into things he has been forbidden to touch, etc.

    But it is relentless until then. You need someone to help give you some time out for yourself - is that possible?

    Even if no family around, maybe 1-2 afternoons a week a mother's helper or babysitter so you can just chill?

    Don't worry about the food. It is just about the only thing in their lives they can control and say no to, so they do. When he is hungry, he will eat.

    Hang in. XOXO.

  22. I'm sorry it's rough right now! I'm sure the teaching/staying at home thing will work out in its own time. I've been teaching for three years and I'm worried that I will not be able to handle teaching and being a mom at the same time. I'm trying to save up and work hard now so that when we do have kids, I can take a few years off when they're little. I think the grass is always greener on the other side.

  23. girl i can feel your frustrations, and while i can't say i understand (as i haven't been in a mom's shoes) i do sympathize for you! i hope you are able to de-stress and find ways to maintain yourself - your mind, your sanity, etc. i know you love little nick and being a mom but sometimes you still need to do things for yourself. hope you had a good weekend!

  24. I'm obviously not in your shoes yet so I can't offer any advice from personal experience. I will say this, just remember that this is all temporary. He's going to be in school before you blink and you'll never regret spending these days, good and bad, with him. You can always go back to work next fall and while individual days will seem long I bet as a whole this first year will seem like a blur. Hang in there!

  25. I know exactly how you feel. I have been a stay at home mom for 6 years. Before that time, I had worked since I was 16! It is a very hard adjustment and even after 6 years, I still struggle with it. I now have 3 kids and at this time I feel like the laundry never stops! But now, my oldest is in Kindergarten and my 2nd will be in Kindergarten next year. My 3rd one is about a week older than yours (01-30-09). On the upside, just yesterday someone described my kids to someone else as the "best kids". That is worth staying home for! Although they are all boys, they really are good, well behaved boys. It is hard, but in the long run, very worth it! Hang in there!

  26. Girl, we have all been there. I found Jack's first year to be the hardest for me.

    I think you should seriously consider going back to teaching. You clearly have a passion for it, and it could be a very good choice for you and your family.

    As a fellow running mom, I will of course support and cheer for you no matter what you decide!

  27. I NEED to work. I need the break. I didn't feel like a proper person when I was on mat leave. Given our boys are the same age, I know what you mean. Cairn is in at everything! I work at home on Mondays and I'm a wreck by the end of the day.