Truth about SAHM life {from a working mom}


truth about SAHM life {from a working mom} :: DMMBI work.

I know, I know, we ALL work – but I mean I have a job outside the home. I returned to the office when my son was 9 weeks old, and have never REALLY experienced anything other than the “shuffle, shuffle, juggle” act that is balancing parenting and a demanding career.

I sometimes wonder what it would be like to be a SAHM – A leisurely breakfast- eating our cereal together while I sip my coffee. My son quietly playing in my room while I get ready for the day. Going on fun local outings. Stopping by the grocery store to grab a few items. Getting things done around the house during nap time. A fun craft or trip to the park in the afternoon. — It sounds wonderful, right?

Well, the above version of that story IS wonderful. And I spent last Friday in an attempt to live out that wonderful version, and learned some truths about life as a SAHM.

truth about SAHM life {from a working mom} :: DMMB
“I only act like I want eggs for breakfast!”

1. Breakfast: There is NOTHING leisurely about a toddler who wants eggs and toast and then refuses to eat them– after getting jelly absolutely everywhere. That toddler will then give in and agree to eating half a bowl of cereal. The toddler must always dump the other half all over the floor, it’s some unwritten requirement.

Ladies, whole milk is sticky, and let’s just say I found Friday’s coffee in the microwave on Saturday morning.

Truth: SAHM breakfast is adorable — adorable, and messy, and stressful. Definitely not leisurely.

2. Getting ready: Tears, deodorant for everyone– everywhere, and a nail polish spill. I did not even attempt to shower (thank goodness for dry shampoo). Pretty sure I only had mascara on one eye, but at some point, you’re just thankful to get clothes on everyone!

Truth: I have no idea how SAHMs get ready for anything! “Quietly playing” does not happen with toddlers. Especially not while mom is trying to shower, pee, put on makeup, dress, or slather the 4th coat of chipped polish on toes . . . it just does not happen.

3. Fun local outing: Met two SAHM friends at the Denver Zoo {after literally wrestling the toddler into his car seat}. BOTH had packed picnics {when did you have time to do that?!}, and neither showed up with a child who needed to change their entire outfit before we even entered the Zoo. They also both seemed so at ease with the whole thing, where I felt a little overwhelmed and mildly out of place.

Truth: We had an awesome time at the Zoo, but getting there was a miracle. Additionally, toddler attention span at the Zoo is minimal at best. Thankful that all exhibits have sturdy enclosures, and that my lovely friends brought picnics to share. {They must have known that was NOT on my radar.}

truth about SAHM life {from a working mom} :: DMMB
“Good thing somebody’s mom packed a picnic!”

4. Grocery store

Truth: Yeah, right! It was almost nap time, I wasn’t stopping ANYWHERE!!!

5. Getting things done during nap time: Another change of clothes, three books, one song sang fifteen times, more tears, and mom asking the toddler to get in bed no less than forty times – I was ready for a nap before he was!

Truth: I’m not sure there actually was a nap. He did stay in his room for an hour, so that was a victory — but all I managed to do in that time was catch up on some work emails.

6. Craft or trip to park after nap: After “nap”, there was snack – which went relatively well. After snack, he wanted to sit on the toilet and sing the aforementioned song another fifteen times while he thought about using the toilet. Toilet sing along was followed by a neighbor ringing the doorbell.

Truth: There was no post-“nap” craft, and the outing was to the front yard where my son ran around in nothing but his underwear and played with the hose, while our dog tried to avoid him.

The truth of my day barely resembled my idealized version, but I really did have a great time being home with my son. I enjoyed the messy, stressful, unstructured day – even if it left me feeling a little inadequate in the mom department. {I mean seriously — picnics?!} It didn’t break my heart to drop my son back off at school Monday morning, but I am looking forward {with some trepidation} to my next SAHM day.

So the truth is, you SAHMs are amazing. You spend all day every day, caring for, singing to, feeding, cleaning up after, and worrying about your little ones. I won’t say that being a working mom is easy – it’s HARD trying to make up for the time you aren’t together, to be the best mom you can be while trying to be the best employee — but I have REAL respect for those of you on the other side.

For the record: You all may meet me at the zoo with a picnic anytime!


  1. This post makes me smile. I worked after my first and then was able to stay home after our second was born. I had no idea what I was getting into. I so appreciate getting to experience both working and staying home with kids. It gives me an appreciation for where I am today, but also for those who are working and have a different experience than me.

    Now, as SAHM, I too have written about my admiration for those ‘on the other side’. Working moms have their own challenges and deserve equal respect and encouragement πŸ™‚

    WE admire you too.

    • Thanks Elaine! I loved your post too, and definitely appreciate the support! I’ve thought of staying home, doing DMMB full time, and giving up the corporate gig– so maybe I’ll get the chance to experience being a “work at home” mom– which might be the scariest prospect of all!

      Regardless of situation, none of this mama business is easy, and it’s so beautiful to be able to lean on each other and lend a, “Mama, I get you!” when things are tough!

  2. I laughed through this whole post! I ‘work from home’ on Monday’s…I feel like a post about that would be just about like this πŸ™‚


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