Wednesday, May 12, 2010

Becoming A Real Mom

I overheard one of my aunts tell another aunt that you aren't a "real" mom until you have at least three kids.

I thought, at the time, "That's not true. And kinda rude to mom's with less than three kids!"

Well, um...

I can't help but think she was kinda right.

Sorry, mom's with one and two kids.

Looking back on being a mom to one totally seems like she was just a fun "accessory."

Now, I KNOW that at the time, being a new mom was sometimes VERY hard. It totally was!

But now? In hindsight, it was a piece of cake. She was like my little doll I got to dress up and hang out with and go on walks with and go shopping with and read books to. OH, it was fun being a mom of one!

Well, what about two kids then? Wasn't it difficult transitioning to two kids? YES! But compared to this time it seems like I was able to fall into a pretty good routine fairly quickly. I got a good cleaning schedule going, read my scriptures, worked out almost everyday, kept up with the laundry fairly well, had our kitchen well stocked most of the time, took the kids outside everyday, etc.

I may be looking back on it through "rose colored glasses"...I probably am.

But THREE??!

I am not anywhere NEAR back to normal yet. It is definitely better now that Mr. SweetSweet is on a good sleep schedule...but I still find myself just barely keeping my head above water with everything I want/need to get done daily!

If I exercise during Mr. SweetSweet's morning nap then I have to push my shower back to his 2nd nap, which doesn't always happen if both the boys don't take good afternoon naps. And when all the kids are awake? Forget about getting any house work done! There is just NO TIME, in between feeding, changing diapers, breaking up fights, etc. I can MAYBE get one little thing done daily, like a load of laundry or dishes unloaded or make dinner or vacuum.

Then there's the ever important daily scripture study that just hasn't found it's "niche" into my daily routine. This one I feel the worst about because I know I NEED it to get through the day, more than a shower or having the toilet clean.


.....I have come to a conclusion that I am NOT excited about: I need more time in the day. And the only way to get that time get up earlier.

I have been able to get by very well up until three kids getting all I needed done without having to wake up before the kids. But I think I'm really going to have to become a real mom and buck up and do it.

I recall doing a Personal Progress achievement for Young Women when I was about 17 where I was supposed to talk to mother's I respect and ask them what one important quality a mother needs to have. When I asked my mom about it she thought for a while and said, "Learn to get up early. Before your kids do. It will be the only time you can truly have to yourself."

I remember thinking: "Yeah! That totally makes sense! I am going to get into that habit NOW!"

Pffffft. Yeah right. That lasted for about a week. This is the Piddle Queen you are talking to! I go to bed at 12:30 am regularly. Have for a LONG time. And I've gotten by fine doing this....up until now.

I am really starting to feel it, these days. As are the dark, puffy bags under my eyes.


Will power, come be my friend, please? I am a Real Mom now...that needs to act like one! Which I guess....sigh....includes waking up early.

Maybe I'll look like this, someday, when I wake up in the morning?

OH, I hope so.


Allison @ Allie Browns Layouts said...

OHHHH MY GOODNESS I've been thinking the same thing about the whole sleep issue.

I've never heard the term that you aren't a real mom until you have three. But I have heard that once you have three kids, another one is no big deal.

Whatev. We're not having anymore (at least not for a freakishly long time).

But seriously! I've been thinking about getting up super early and going to the gym so that it could be my little "me" time and my time to wake up and be all healthy.

Doesn't it stink that we have to change our ways for our kiddos? But then again, this is our dream. We wanted this! So doesn't at least one transition need to happen in our lives? Just because we become adults and mothers doesn't mean we are no longer obligated to changing our ways. *SIGH* And that's so bumming.

All the mother's that I look up to in my ward are Mom's who wake up at the buttcrack of dawn, make three meals a day, never nap (*gasp*), and are constantly on their feet keeping their house beautiful.

Example: my friend Rebecca. She's amazing and you're missing out if you don't check out her blog. She's redoing her whole house on a tight budget(and it looks awesome) and she also has an autistic son (as well as five kids).

Anyways, your post is pretty much what I've been thinking of this week. Thanks for writing this. It's nice to know that I'm not alone.

(Sorry for the novel too)

Andrea said...

Great post! I can truly relate. Getting up earlier than the kids does suck, but it's always nice when you can shower, get dressed, and do your make-up without any 'help'! That is, if you even decide it's worth it to do your make-up-I usually don't do it unless I'm leaving the house, even then sometimes I don't. Hang in there! You'll get into a good routine soon. Wait till Hannah goes to Kindergarten and your left with just 2 again-it will be such a piece of cake :-)
Can't wait to see you guys soon!!

CoconutKate said...

Hmmmm...I don't know if I'll ever be a real mom, but I totally agree with the get up earlier. I LOVE the early mornings. I do my best work and have the most inspiration in the early morning. I also go to bed between 9 and 10. Sometimes earlier if I'm tired. Hope you find your groove. :0)

Breeana said...

Haha - well let me say congratulations for being a Real Mom, now. You make me only want one! Just teasing... I'm just enjoying only one while it lasts. :)

And good luck working on a better sleep schedule for YOU! Brady's always been one to fall asleep and wake up early... so I do the same.

And NOBODY looks like that when they wake up! ;)

Andrea said...

So I posted a comment on this entry yesterday, but it never showed up! This is a really good post-I can totally relate!

Kim said...

Sorry things are so crazy for you. I wish I had some advice. I guess I would just say try not to feel like you have to do too much. It's ok to have a messy house sometimes. I commend you on the exercising though!!! That is one thing I will probably always put on the bottom of my list!

Josh and Cori said...

I couldn't have said it better myself-I have felt exactly those same feelings-my friends with one or 2 kids don't know how easy they have it-seems like they are always out and about doing fun things while I am frazzled at home because I have stuff to do,errands to run, but can't because I am a slave to a nap schedule, a kindergartener, and a 4 year old!!! You are not alone-If there were only 3 more hours in the day. I think I have to start getting up early if I want to exercise or have any time to myself, to just THINK!!! You're awesome for writing this, and not alone!

Kristine said...

Oh my.
I would like to laugh at this...but it is reality in my life.
Especially the whole workout/shower, etc...
AND the
only getting one thing done per day
AND the
trying to find time for scripture study.

What can I say?
You've discovered a truth.
Unfortunately, I still haven't made it to the consistent, get up early before my kids routine.
When I do it, I'm AMAZED at how much I accomplish in an hour or an hour and half, but then that old habit of staying up late creeps back in and I'm napping during that blissful hour.

Of course, it also doesn't help that my kids are up by 5:30-6:00am...I'm going to be hard pressed to get up regularly when the clock still reads 4am.

Em said...

From one 12:30 amer to another, I support you whatever you decide to muscle through to get your desired results. :) And I don't believe for a second that the girl in that picture just woke up. she spent an hour getting ready for the photo shoot, climbed under the covers, and closed her eyes.
Love you!

The Other Oyler's said...

U r still supermom to me! I used to be so good at getting up early when I was in college but ever since I graduated I have been horrible. That's been my "project" for a long time now. I will let you know the secret if I ever find one. Do your kids get up early? Nick gets up at like 6 at the latest. Thank goodness Matt gets up with him!

Mom said...

I agree that having that third child really does change your life (as the number of parents and the number of hands you have are now out-numbered)!

The amazing thing, though, is that once I figured out how to handle three that any additional children did not seem all that much more difficult! Perhaps that is because by the time the others come along the first one or two are old enough to actually be of help to you. :-D

Whatever the reason, though, hats off to mothers of THREE! :-D

Brian and Janette said...

As I was reading this post, and before I came to it, I was thinking to myself, "Waking up earlier was the trick for me." Of course, it sounds like you figured that out for yourself too. The only stipulation is that you make yourself go to bed earlier. There are very few things that are more important than getting enough sleep. Did you know lack of sleep actually shortens your life expectancy? I know I just feel better when I get up, exercise, shower, study the scriptures and THEN start playing mom for the day. Just makes my day go a whole lot better knowing I got the absolute essentials in!

rachbug said...

Ditto to what everyone else said. You're post is so true. I really relate to this great truth.

Jamie Sue said...

Getting caught up on your blog-but I've often said having 2 kids is like playing house but 3 is WORK!

Diane said...

Candace!! You're too cute. I've been back reading all your posts & had to comment on this one! I believe I was the one who made this comment at the family reunion? If not, I definately believe this! I have looked at friends who have their 1st & then 2nd child & think - "boy, life was so easy back then!" It's funny to listen to them complain about how hard it is! HA! I quietly think to myself - "Just wait...number 3 is around the corner." Ah...the life of a mother! We wouldn't trade it for the world. :)