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You Are A Stay-At-Home Mom, How Can You Not Find Time?

Sometimes when I walk around carrying my toddler, trying to put her to sleep, all it gives me is a pain in my legs. I know there is 'no value’ in it. And I am scared of what tomorrow holds for me.

At 5.30 am, when she woke up for the umpteenth time, I rocked her and put her in the crib and came out of the bedroom. I took my nail polish and started to colour my nails. The black colour doesn’t seem to stick, it’s dripping away slowly.

Am I hallucinating, or is this real?

People say, motherhood makes you more patient. I think what it has put in me is uncontrollable rage. A tiny being with a developing brain isn’t capable of doing that. Then I think, from where did it originate?

I think it has to do with the ‘no value’ attached to the work I do now.

Being a mother is a full-time job!

By work, I mean, the work that comes with being a mother. And most of the time, it’s read as doing something meaningless concerning your contribution towards yourself and society at large. The below example explains this well.

Because when you are a stay-at-home mother, how can you not find the time?

Last day, a lady came home for threading my eyebrows. It was just before a function we had to attend. I told her I didn’t get time to visit the parlour. She asked me, “Are you working?”

I said “no”.

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Pat came this, “What’s the big deal then? Just go to the parlour when your baby sleeps”. Exclamation, exclamation, exclamation. Whole three times. As if I didn’t know this.

What do you do, mamma?

Sometimes when those tiny fingers play around with beads moving them back and forth, my mind too hops back and forth, thinking if I would be able to connect the dots from my past to a faraway future.

Sometimes when I walk around carrying my toddler, trying to put her to sleep, all it gives me is a pain in my legs. I know there is ‘no value’ in it. And I am scared of what tomorrow holds for me.

This girl in my arms would grow up to be a full-fledged human, and would ask me, “What do you do, mamma?”

It’s a question that squirms me and makes me fumble.

Social media brings in many perspectives

I switch on the camera to record a session of our storytelling and post it on Instagram because that’s what everybody does. Now, whether I really want to do this or is it just a show that I want to put up to negate the futility of my existence is something I want to ask myself.

I see influencers earning money with hashtags like ‘despite being a mother of two’.

Social media is undoubtedly a blessing in many ways. But it comes with a lot of pressure as well. Sometimes people are left with no choice but to barge in. So many people make a living out of it.

What started as a creator’s space to share has become a place of fierce competition to garner likes, and saves and amass a huge following.

What if I don’t want to fit into the frame of Instagram?

I am afraid!

I don’t want Instagram’s professional dashboard gnawing at me all day. Furthermore, I for now aspire to influence only my daughter. Moreover, I just want to live at this moment. But, I am afraid, staying unpopular these days is often taken as diffidence.

As the popular J.D. Salinger quote goes, ”I am sick of not having the courage to be an absolute nobody”.

Everybody wants to be somebody. And there is nothing wrong with that. To each one of us, whatever feels right. But I feel there is a problem, when the world preaches, and prods me in unseeingly seeming ways.

Have a second child to not mess up my work timeline?

At a birthday party I attended, one of my relatives kept nagging me, telling me it was quite sad that I won’t be able to resume my work anytime soon. In fact, she suggested I have one more child sooner so that it won’t affect my timeline of work.

I tried my best to avoid her, but she didn’t back off until she got a piece of my mind.

Sometimes, see, I’m left with no other option than to explain the purpose of my purposeless existence. The world at large seems to be progressing fast and claims to be progressive.

Then where does this judgement come from? Why is there a constant pressure to ‘become’ somebody that the world would revere?

Where is support for me?

Sometimes I wish I had a job. Going to a space that abides by logical behaviour and good sensibilities, propelled by a fat pay cheque, looks really attractive. Maybe then a little support would come my way because those are more important things than child-rearing.

But on days when I have to control my shit because my fussy toddler won’t allow me to sit on a commode in peace, I wish life would cut me some slack.

I wish I could freeze time in those heart-melting embraces and kisses. How I wish I could just be at peace leaning on those tiny shoulders.

I do crave financial independence. But at this moment, things look bleak on that front. I don’t have any regrets. When I look at my daughter, all I have is gratitude. Even with that, I feel I am allowed to feel what I felt. If you have read until here, thank you. I felt heard.

These feelings are normal, and part of motherhood

After much deliberation, for once and for all, I want to say this to myself and my tribe going through this phase, I see you. You are doing a great job, and stop inventing tomorrow’s that don’t exist. Fearlessly live this moment, it’s incredibly easy if you believe in it.

Reeling isn’t the only way to feel moments. And stop chasing the world for validation because I know how tired you are already.

Just because you are doing it differently doesn’t mean you are doing anything ‘less’. ‘You matter’ even if you do nothing other than take care of your child and the only validation you need is yours. Period.

Image source: Green Perture via Getty Images, free and edited on CanvaPro

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