First, an update on our dear sweet Bird.
Bird is an unbelievable 20 months old (well, in two days). This utterly blows my mind. It means he's going to be TWO in four short months.
He has become the happiest, funniest child.
- chores - sweeping, mopping, vacuuming, laundry. These are things he actually begs me to do each day. It is so much easier to get these things done when your child is enthusiastic about just watching you do them. He has his mini-mop and regularly parades around with the full-size broom, saying, "'weep! 'weep! 'weep!"
- Talking. Honey child never stops talking. He's mostly using one word statements, but due to his enormous vocabulary, there is very little he can't get across.
- Going for walks, either to the neighbourhood playground or to see the duckies at the stream behind our hours.
- Shuh-shies (french fries). He gets them every couple weeks and LOVES them. Mom of the year over here.
- SuperWhy and Sesame Street. Hey, his father was away for 7 weeks. Don't judge. We watched a bit of TV twice a day - when we were waking up before breakfast, and when I was cooking supper.
- When he is done eating and the food is still in front of him. He pushes it away and if it doesn't disappear he'll dump the plate on the table or throw it.
- When I don't let him mess with the washing machine buttons or dishwasher buttons.
- Honestly, there's very little he just objects to.
Our favourite fall memories so far have been walks "at the speed of toddler," basically meaning walks led by Bird, a glorious trip to a corn maze, the costume party at a local play cafe, and Daddy's first few days back home in mid-October.
An update on me
Well, being a stay home mom is wonderful. And not so wonderful at times. We had 7 weeks where it was just Bird and I. During that time, there was a sleep regression, several teeth, and lots of idle days. Bird's nap falls right when most of the free playgroups and activities happen because although most toddlers nap in the early afternoon,Bird naps from 10-1ish. So we often have a hard time filling our days with things to keep Bird engaged and socialized. And, as a result, I have a hard time keeping myself socialized as well. While K. was away, I started feeling very isolated and lonely because Bird goes to bed at 7. My friends all seemed to be busy with their families and day to day lives. I had a lot of help from family and a few friends did venture over to visit, which was so wonderful.
The theme of isolation and loneliness seems to be continuing, though. I have not gotten back into the swing of having a social life yet, although it's been a month since K. has been home. I honestly really miss having outside interests such as ballet, outings with friends, my Career Development Practitioner program, and even work. We have discussed the possibility of me returning to a part-time career, but I haven't put much effort into finding one that suits my needs so far. We even discussed me returning to a full time career, but concluded that it is not what either of us prefer for Bird.
I am never sorry I chose to stay at home with Bird. Never. But I do lament that it really doesn't seem possible for a mother to have it all without feeling some sort of role conflict. I know many men face this as well, but it honestly seems that women have this inborn need to do all of the things and that it can very difficult to be personally fulfilled and the mother we want to be all at once - no matter what path you chose : working, working at home, or staying at home.
Anyway, my upcoming challenge for myself is to find some way to have a little adult interaction on a weekly basis and use my brain. The challenge will be to keep my anxiety from holding me back.