Browsing through my old blog posts, I came across this post, and I laughed a little to myself. I had written the post almost 5 years ago, when I was working in a full-time office job, with two young children in full-time daycare. I loved my work, but I missed my children, and struggled daily with my desire to find balance between work and family. When I was at home, my mind was on my work, and when I was at work, I just wanted to be at home with my kids. I was never fully present, and I knew I wanted to make a change.
Here I am half a decade later, and while I walk in very different shoes now, there are some struggles that remain the same. I’m doing work that is driven by my passion. I’ve found a way to spend more time with my children, and I have no regrets about the changes that I’ve made in my life. But there are days when I still question myself. Days when I wonder if I should be earning more, advancing my career, or spending more time keeping up with my neglected household chores. The truth is, no matter what you’re doing, the grass will always seem greener on the other side.
That being said, I feel like I’ve finally settled into this self-employment gig. I’ve developed a pretty reliable routine, a great roster of clients and ongoing writing work, and I’m happy – really happy with where I’m at. But as a WAHM (work-at-home mom), there are some things that are just unavoidable. If you are (or have been) a work-from-home parent, you may be able to relate to some of these.
You know you’re a WAHM when…
Your meetings are primarily by phone, and scheduled around nap times.
You spend many important phone calls walking in circles around your house, hiding in bathrooms with closed doors, or standing on your front porch, hoping the person on the other line can’t hear your crying/whining/screeching/chatty toddler.
It’s 2pm and you realize you haven’t eaten yet, so you stand in front of the open refrigerator, gnawing on a cold chicken leg while swiping through your unopened emails on your now-greasy phone.
You participate in Skype / Google Hangouts wearing professional-looking business attire on top – and no pants.
You take “switch the laundry over” breaks, instead of coffee breaks.
Mingling with coworkers means changing a poopy diaper while singing Humpty Dumpty, or picking up dog poop with one hand while trying to coax your furry companion to stay off the road.
You finally change out of your PJs at 2:45pm so that the parents at after-school pickup don’t know that you’ve spent the day in your flannels.
You accept important calls from a toddler who doesn’t realize that her phone is actually a TV remote…
What have I missed? Share your “you know you’re a WAHM when…” below!