I have a confession which really isn’t much of a confession as I’ve never made a secret of its validity: I am a slacker mom.
When pregnant with Z, I taught high school. School ended in early June and Z wasn’t due until mid-August, so I figured the summer would be an excellent time to start my “Beth would make an excellent stay-at-home-mother” campaign. I thought I would cook the occasional meal, keep the house tidy, and generally show what a responsible adult I could be. What I ended up doing was writing tons in my diary, nearly-finishing my first novel, and taking nap upon nap upon nap. I would finish one nap only to start another one, and the only acceptable interruption to a nap was food. Habit Burger, usually. Excellent fuel for a growing fetus.
Naturally, I justified this behavior as my last-huzzah before becoming a responsible parent. Once I had a kid, I’d have plenty of time to do all the housewife things I’d always dreamed of.
Fantasy. Fantasy. Fantasy.
My stay-at-home-mommy-ness is defined by sneaking every spare minute I can possibly find for myself. And stealing other minutes that I can’t find. Time has become my eureka, my force, my raison d’etre.
I do laundry when I feel like it, or as is often the case, when it’s absolutely necessary. The same thing goes for washing the dishes and cleaning the bathrooms. Sure, I go through bouts where I vow to wash the dishes every evening while Husband gives Z her bath, but it soon turns into “wash the dishes every other morning” and eventually the vow devolves into something like “wash the dishes when company is coming over.”
Other stay-at-homers might complain about all the time they spend cleaning. Why bother? I wonder. They spend time with their kids, and they clean, and then there isn’t much time left for themselves. I spend time with my kid, I don’t clean, and I steal as much writing time as I can. It’s so much more fulfilling.
It can backfire, though. Sometimes I’m so intent on my ninja-stealth-time-thievery that I forget important things, like Husband. Or Z. And all I want to do is read-this-book-right-now-disturb-me-and-suffer-my-wrath. That’s when it’s time for a reality check, usually provided free-of-charge in the form of an incredulous look on Husband’s face. Then after Z’s tucked in bed, we curl up together and watch Castle on hulu. With take-out. Because after all that work, do you really expect me to cook a meal?
This post by Hyperbole and a Half says it (and draws it) a hundred times better than I ever could.