Hi. I’m June, and I am a WAHM.
Most of you would know that that stands for work-at-home mum, but you probably have little clue about how we operate. My world can be summed up in two words:
Yes, that’s me, trying to run a household of mini cute ‘monsters’ – three of them, to be exact. Desperately straddling both work and family at the same time, with no clear divider line.
The fact that I can actually hold down a job while taking care of all three (not totally on my own, thank God) is a miracle in itself. Though I do have days when I feel like giving it all up…
Days when the baby (and two pre-schoolers) fight sleep…
Days when lunch gets burnt or someone’s fingers get run over by a toy truck…
Days when I need to take a couple of work calls, and everybody decides to shout and/or sing at the top of their voices. All at the same time…
Most days, I hardly have the time to run to the toilet, much less sit and type an email. Then I feel like a crazy juggler, with more balls up in the air than I can handle. So what’s left to do but to multi-task, drop a few less important things like doing groceries or searching for a lost piece of Lego, grab a coffee (somehow this never gets dropped) and tell myself that I’ll get better at this. Eventually.
Working late into the night has also become a part of my reality. How else would I find peace and quiet to sit and think and craft with words?
On a good night, I’ll be able to get some serious writing done. Press release – check. Q&A – check. All within three hours of sitting bent over my laptop, furiously tapping on its keyboard while praying fervently that baby sleeps well and no preschooler gets any nightmares.
At the end of some days, I head to bed, exhausted and wondering: Why did I choose to be a WAHM? Did I make the right decision?
There are pros and cons to every career move you make. A major struggle for me is in the area of achievement. I don’t feel like I’m progressing as much as I should. It’s also hard to draw the line between work and home.
Another struggle I face is spending time with the children. One reason I chose to be a WAHM is to have quality time with my kids – but I’ve realised that being physically present at home doesn’t equate to quality time.
There are times when I feel like a failure in both the domains of work and home … and on such days, I eat lots of chocolate and offload my sorrows onto the poor unsuspecting husband!
On the flip side, there are moments that remind me what I’m doing this for. For instance, just being there when my children need me. To break up a fight, and on a good day, actually teach them something through the process. To encourage them when they fall or find it a struggle to accomplish a task. To try new things together, or just enjoy simple activities like crafting or visiting our favourite playgrounds.
The days when our children need us most are short. I’d imagine that not too long from now, I’ll be wondering where all the time had gone.
This is why I keep at it, even if it’s a struggle balancing both worlds.
Editor’s note: June will be sharing some secrets to make the WAHM journey that little bit easier (and to retain some sanity) on Saturday. Be sure to join us for Part 2!
This guest post comes courtesy of June Yong, a writer-mum of three and creator of mamawearpapashirt.com. She shares grace-filled stories, lessons learnt, and ideas on how to live a simple and playful life with our families.