I was at the markets the other day, and a lady whom I had known from around town was chatting to me about the new baby. She was a little shocked to see that I was carrying my baby around in a baby wrap. When will you put her in a stroller? Isn’t she heavy? If you carry her all the time now, she will always want you to carry her, etc. I’ve heard these things so many times. Does she feed well? (Look at the size of her, of course she does!). Does she wake up all night? (she’s a newborn, all newborns wake up at night!). Does she cry a lot. Well, she cries because she CAN’T talk! Of course she cries. Then, ‘YOU BIRTHED HER AT HOME!’. You’re so brave (what she meant to say was, I think you’re so stupid!). Then, you shouldn’t have such a little baby outside.
Then, she asks me when I’m returning to work. “Well….’ I said… ‘probably not at least for another year, maybe 18 months’. To which she replies, ‘Oh, you LAZY thing!’.
Excuse me, but what part of staying home with a baby and a toddler means being lazy. Just yesterday, Art was gone for about 12 hours at work. Of course, I could handle it. But, let me tell you, in order to feed these two, keep the house semi-presentable, wash 3 or 4 loads of laundry, keep Margo entertained, have a little outing, taking them both to the potty, etc., I don’t think I stopped for a minute, except when I took a nap with them. I would never miss that nap if I can help it! Even when I sat down to feed the baby, I was being assaulted by a constant stream of chatter from Margo or she was dropping books on my lap for me to read to her.
I clearly remember when I retuned to work three days a week, when Margo was 15 months old. ‘Wow‘, I thought, ‘This is too easy!‘. Where is that chatty toddler? Who do I have to take care of all day besides my self? Now, I’m not saying it’s a cop out to go back to work with a baby, it’s damn hard work. You’re almost always tired and never getting enough sleep. And, then you’re tired and grumpy when you get home, etc. And, you feel bad that you missed your kid’s day. But, honestly, who says that being a stay at home mom is being lazy! People will say damn near anything!