I’ve already cried at the thought of things going back to the way they were, pre-pandemic. As a full-time stay-at-home-mom who went back to work in October 2019, I believed I made the best decision for my family. I had gotten two full years with my 2-year-old twin girls and seven months with my 7-month-old son. For someone that never saw herself as a SAHM, two years was enough. I was ready for the workforce and all that comes with it: daycare drop-off, packed diaper bags, and a rushed dinner and bedtime etc.
A few months in, I am happy to say it was a good decision for my family. I have felt less stressed and have a newfound professional purpose in my life.
However, COVID-19 has sent my emotions into overdrive.
In early March, I started to work from home. Working from home with three kids under three isn’t easy… especially when your husband is trying to work from home, as well. When we first started this process, I had so much anxiety. I kept telling myself:
“I went back to work for a reason!”
I told myself that this season of life would be too difficult and that I wouldn’t know how we would get through it. While my thoughts were valid, as being pulled in all different directions has been incredibly difficult, I never imagined how much I would enjoy being with my children. I have witnessed new milestones, including my 13-month-old son taking his first steps. I’ve seen one of my twins become fully potty-trained. The twins have started to play pretend more, which is incredibly enjoyable to watch. They are saying new, larger words every day and I’ve been able to help teach them about random things I never had the time to think about while I was working.
Without the stay-at-home order in place, I would have missed the memories we are making together – and that makes me incredibly emotional. As a SAHM, I think I had become so inundated with how difficult it was – the day-to-day tasks of constantly cleaning, doing dishes, and wiping butts, that I had forgotten how to play.
This pandemic, while difficult, has gifted me time with them.
Time to play. Time to soak in their laughs and cuddles. Time to realize all that I miss as a working mom. It is heartbreaking.
When things return to “normal,” I hope to always remember the memories that were made in this house. With all the hustle and bustle of daycare drop-off, making dinner, and bedtime routines, I hope I can take it slow, just as I have during our stay-at-home order. I hope I focus more on building my relationships with my children, rather than constantly looking at my watch, worried about being late to work or the kids being up too late past their bedtime. I want to continue to soak in all the wonderful memories that motherhood has given me, and I have the stay-at-home order, to thank.