Sunday, August 25, 2013

Organized SAHM: Mommy Napping

You can take a nap, but there will be consequences.

Recap: My friend J wrote me an email, asking for advice because she's a new SAHM and wanted advice. This is my third attempt at sharing my wisdom. Previously I've confessed that I lack wisdom, but have a few ideas about saving money in the kitchen

But napping - I understand that. Here is what J wrote:

I thought I would have time to clean, to cook, to engage/teach/discipline the children, take a nap, fit in some work, maybe even exercise, and sleep - boy was I wrong!!

My friend J has what I like to call overly high expectations with a combination of supermom-itis and disillusionment. It happens.  

(Let me stop here and explain that this is my experience- I am in no way a trained counselor or therapist or medical person. I have never been diagnosed with ppd and am not an expert on mental health. If you struggle to get out of bed, struggle to stay awake, please speak to a doctor. This post is not for mental health issues). 

Back to napping: napping with a baby curled against your chest, or a sick toddler who needs snuggles; napping after drinking hot chocolate and falling asleep with a book. It's picturesque and romantic. It's what I envisioned when I planned to be a SAHM. 

It's also nonsensical when applied to motherhood.

Cuteness overload: chubby hands attached to a sleeping child. She has dimples on her chubs.

You will have moments of precious napping - staring at chubby fingers and long eyelashes. Kissing cheeks that beg for smooches.

If you fall asleep though, you will have consequences.

For one, you might not be tired later. I am the queen of this: I nap because my eyes cannot stay open at two o'clock in the afternoon, but end up staring at the ceiling at midnight. My kids still wake up at six, and I have created a nasty cycle.

Two, this is prime dinner making time. Throw chicken in the crockpot or defrost a lasagna. Plan something or succumb to the idea that you will serve cereal for dinner. Otherwise you might be making dinner while the kids use you as a jungle gym.

Three, you will be overwhelmed. This partly depends on your personality, but I need alone moments during the day. Do something alone - read a blog, journal, stare out the window. My alone time today might be a shower. I may splurge and shave my legs.

Of course every rule has an exception. If you stayed up late cleaning puke or stripping a wet bed, take a nap. If you have been sick, take a nap. If you have a newborn, please take a nap.

This late-night baby is awake because she and her momma napped at about six o'clock at night. Bad idea. 

Sleeping needs some sort of a schedule in my SAHM life. I am loose with the nap-time of my babies, because that works for me. My older two don't nap, but the baby gets a morning nap and an afternoon nap. If she doesn't, she's grumpy. She can nap at nine in the morning, or eleven.

Like so much with a SAHM life, find out what works for you and your kiddos. I doubt that you will get to nap every day, but you might.

Again, the expectation of what the SAHM thought she could do, is bringing her down. Expectations met with real life?

That is what one Organized SAHM has learned to overcome, to think about.