Changing diapers, fixing bottles, giving baths, and playing peek-a-boo, are just a few tasks that stay at home moms perform on a daily basis. Those things are no longer on the “to do” list of the mom who’s children are school-aged, but she too has responsibilities.
When meeting a lady, we started talking about our career choices. She told me that she owned a small company and worked part-time in retail. When she asked me what I did, I happily said I was a stay at home mom. Her reply was “Oh… I guess you don’t really do anything”. You can imagine my shock when hearing those words. As she changed the subject I was left feeling a little bruised, but at the same time it prompted me to write about what a stay at home mom/ housewife does during the day.
Wake up to the sound of an obnoxious alarm. I notice that the birds haven’t woken up and the sun hasn’t peeked through the darkness. As my feet hit the cold bathroom floor it gives me the sudden burst of energy I need to start my day.
Praying the coffee would brew faster is an every morning occurrence because instead of listening to my husband, I bought a coffee maker that didn’t have a built in timer.
As I scramble the eggs, flip the pancakes, and pour the juice, I make an entry on my grocery list. A quick conversation with my husband precedes a sack lunch being prepared for the sleepy 11 year old that is still in dream land.
A kiss goodbye and a wave from the window sends my husband off to work, then another scramble, another flip, and a cold glass of milk is prepared for the half asleep pre-teen that stumbles into the kitchen.
Showering, brushing teeth, and applying make-up are three things that have to be accomplished as soon as my son swallows his last bite of food. Not enough time to dress like a super model but nice enough to be seen in public.
Once the breakfast dishes have been washed it’s out the door to sit in the cold while the car is warming up. Although it only takes a short time, the icicles hanging from my ears tell me different. Just 15 minutes until school starts, hopefully I’ll make it on time.
As my son makes his way out of the car, I’m reminded that I have a basket of soiled clothes awaiting my return and many items on my “to do” list.
As I survey the laundry room, I wonder if there are more than 3 people living in my house. Did my husband take in a few boarders? What I thought was 2 loads of laundry sky rocketed to 5. At least that’s what I’ve counted so far. Scoop the soap, turn the dial, and onto my next task.
Unlike the cat walk, I make my way down the hall carrying a bucket that contains every cleaning product known to man. My mission? The Bathroom. As light exposes the most used room in the house, my eyes jump from the sink and then to the floor. I ask myself again, do we have boarders and if so how many do we have exactly?
After adding another basket of clothes to the washer, I grab the vacuum cleaner which feels heavier than it did yesterday. As the electricity revs up the engine, an odor pierces my nose and I realize it’s time for a vacuum “make over”. I empty the casing, change the filter, and we’re ready to roll.
Now that I’ve extracted the dirt from the carpets, I turn my attention to sweeping. This is a task that makes me want to find the person that made my broom and swat him with his own product. The device is oddly shaped and awkward to hold, which ultimately causes me to sweep an area more than once.
After dusting the furniture, a basket of clothes is folded and put away. One finished and 3 to go. As I gather the next pile to put in the washer, I’m interrupted by a phone call from my middle schooler. He’s forgotten his lunch, so off I go exceeding the speed limit, because he only has 20 minutes to eat before the next bell.
I add the soap, close the lid, and turn the dial. 40 minutes and counting until I start load #4, so I climb the stairs with my bucket in tow to clean another bathroom. As I open the door my stomach reminds me that I haven’t eaten today, but I ignore the grumble because there’s 90 minutes until school lets out.
As the end of the school day conversation unravels, my preteen informs me that a school project is due tomorrow which hasn’t been started, nor does our house contain the needed supplies. The buzz from the laundry room tells me that it’s time to start load #4, so another scoop, another turn of the dial, and I’m off to the store.
While praying again (this time for my chicken to thaw), I sip the morning coffee that’s been reheated 4 times. Despite the fact that the project requires a scientist, a mathematician, and a history professor to complete, I force myself to be optimistic as I supervise.
After an hour and a half of preparation, dinner is finally served. This time I cave into my stomach’s demand for food and enjoy a much needed family conversation.
As I wash the final dish, I can’t help but wonder if I’ve forgotten an important task. Did I forget an appointment? Did I forget to run an errand? Oh well, no time to worry it’ll come to me later.
While fighting “again”, with the broom I despise, I hear a voice calling for a new towel. So it’s up the stairs, to the linen closet, then to the boy that requested it.
The last crumb swept, the lights turned off, and I’m headed to the most wonderful place in the house. As I brush my teeth an intermittent snore tells me that the sandman is waiting for me to arrive. So I climb into bed, snuggle under the covers, and as my eyes grow heavy, a little voice reminds me of what I forgot earlier. Load #5.
12:15 a.m. (Yes, the next day)
As I fold the last t-shirt, I recount the day’s events to ensure nothing else was forgotten. Happily, all is finished and marked off my list. So I pour into bed, with my eyes heavier than before, I say one more prayer, this time thanking God for my wonderful family and career choice, then, I drift off to sleep.
So this article is for every working man, woman, and young child that wonders what a stay at home mom does all day. You can see it isn’t watching soap operas, and it isn’t getting a manicure. It’s happily devoting our time, our energy, and our love to the most important people in our lives. Our family.