Tag Archive: SAHM

SAHM

A few days ago, I spoke to my big boss again about my plans of taking long leave to take care of little pea. I needed her approval for my submission. Once again, she tried to help me think of alternatives. She sounded disappointed when I told her that this is my only option, and the conversation ended with her saying, “Think about it again. The long break will jeopardise your career.”

This stuck with me for awhile after our tele-conversation. I felt sad and indignified to hear that from her, although I understand her perspective. There is a reason why she is now up on the ladder. She did not “sacrifice” her career for her children. But why in the first place is that a sacrifice?

For me, this decision is not a difficult one. I have tried to put my career before my child, and look what happened to little man’s immunity. I dare say that all his current problems are due to those early days in infant care. Before he went to infant care, he was never sick. When I put him in there at 6-month old, within a short period of 6 months, he was hospitalised 4 times, given endless antibiotics that caused his gut flora to mess up. All problems are stemmed from those days. Hence I told Hubby that if we are going to have another child, I will not let him go through that mess again.

Being a Stay-At-Home-Mom is not easy. Go ask any SAHM. It is not a break. It can be more tiring than work, because you are “working” 24/7. You can have a nice lunch break at work. You have to gobble down your lunch at weird timings because your baby may wake up anytime. You sometimes have to hold your pee and poo because your baby needs you more. In between breaks aka your baby nap time, you have to try to do some housework. You are stuck at home with no adult conversations. And then you will start to feel like you have lose your shine, especially if you do not make an effort to keep yourself in touch with the outside world. The worst part is, people do not recognize what you do. They think that you are having a “break”. Best still, your husband’s words sometimes reveal that he thinks that way too.

That is SAHM for you. A thankless job. But why do I still decided to do it? Why do so many capable women still decided to do it? Because anyone can do your work, but not anyone can be a mother to your child. My children are my priority for now. Because I have made the decision to have them, I must be responsible for them. This is especially so when I am not able to get any reliable help to take care of them.

I think our society has not been very fair to SAHM. I don’t know about the past, but most SAHM whom I know are doing much more than just housework. Because they are much more educated, they try to make a difference in their children’s learning and development while they are at home. Of course, they do not do these for recognition, but the society’s perception certainly needs to change.

Thank you, God.

One of the reasons for staying at home with little man is to build up his immunity through his daily meals. This meant cooking two well-balanced meals for him every day. I make sure that there is always “something from the ocean and something from the hills”.

Very often, fish will be in one of his meals. I am always very careful handling fish or anything with tiny bones. My brother had a near-fatal experience with pork bones when he was younger. He was lucky my mother sent him to KKH early enough to discover that bone stuck in his lungs. This often reminds me to be more careful with handling little man’s food.

Today, I cooked fish porridge again for lunch. When I was handling the fish, I thought I felt something boney. Hence, I went through the meat twice to make sure there was not bones. I did not find any bones in the end. However, when I was having the leftover porridge for my lunch, I found this tiny little fish bone in my mouth. It gives me chills to think that this bone could be in that bowl of porridge little man has just taken. I said a little prayer and thank God for watching over little man.

It’s another reminder that one can never be too careful. I should have trusted my instincts and looked for that boney thingy I felt when handling the fish. I am so thankful and grateful that nothing bad happens.

Negotiations

This is a recent bedtime conversation with Hubby.

Hubs: So what is Thursday going to be like?
Me : HH (little man) will sleep over at my Mum’s place on Wednesday night. Thursday after my event, I will go over to her place and pick him up.

Hubs: Ok.
Me : You want him back for Thursday night right?

Hubs: Yup.
Me : I will rush there to pick him up, only because you wanted him back.

Hubs: ……
Me : If you put yourself in my shoes, you will know how rush it is for me. I was actually hoping to bring him back only on Friday, so that I can have some time by myself to shop or ask the massage lady over. I really need some massage. I feel so tired. You get to have some time during lunch to roam around, but I have to bring him everywhere I go. Not that I don’t enjoy spending time with him, but it is so tiring for me, I just needed a break you know.

Hubs: ……
Me : HM was telling me how her hubby enjoys spending time alone with her. But I think you only want your son…. (and I blabbered and blabbered and blabbered)

I love little man more than I love myself. Such love is amazing, overwhelming and indescribeable. But sometimes even the greatest love needs a little break.

You know, Stay-At-Home-Mum can burn out too.

Immunization to a SAHM

Little man took his Chicken Pox immunization on Friday. Prior to that, we “quarrantined” him for the entire week so as to minimise his chances of falling sick before the jab. Call us paranoid, but I’d rather play safe.

Ever since I became a SAHM, the immunization affairs for little man took a different standing for me. I am not as stressed out as I was when I had to work. Stressed out because I was really worried about how sick he can be, and how it is going to affect my work and how to request for leave and so on and so forth. Being a teacher does not make it any easier as we do not have annual leave, only 6 days of child care leave. Any parents can tell you that a simple cold can easily take 3 days from that 6 days. Sad to say, urgent leave for us are not desirable by the management. Hence it’s also a turmoil and dilemma when it comes to vaccination and child getting sick. But now, being a SAHM, I am more chilled and prepared. My focus is on little man and nothing else, and Hubby does not have to leave his work if he really get sick. I feel such a huge difference.

Anyway, I am really proud of little man. Somehow he did not develop fever at all for the past 3 vaccinations. It surprises me as little man never once go through a vaccination without fever. Hopefully it’s a sign that he is getting stronger in immunity and his body is better prepared when he goes to nursery next year.

Like what Hubby said, just continue what I have been doing with little man, for I must have done something right. 🙂

Depending on oneself

Will be going to do my surgery 10 days after my menses, which will be coming probably last week of May. And probably have to postpone it again, or find other ways around it as there is no one to help me look after little man.

Was already very worried about the surgery, now on top of this, I have to worry about this. It makes me really upset that a potential caretaker HAVE TO travel leisurely during this period even though she knows that I really need someone to help me care for little man while Hubby is busy with me hospitalised and all those miscellaneous administrative things during those days.

My big aunt’s words come to my mind. DEPEND ON NO ONE BUT YOURSELF.

I guess we will really have to depend on ourselves now. Either I postpone the surgery again and risk possible complications, or have little man stay in the hospital with me during this period (though I really dislike this option as he could easily get sick again). Such dilemma. ;(

Working mom VS SAHM

I have been thinking about the past months being a SAHM.

Initially I started out with a teeny weeny bit of grudges against my Mother. Then I saw all the possibilities together with little man. Now almost 3 months into this role, I actually feel relieved to have chosen this path for this period.

I was telling Hubby about how less stressful it was now, as compared to when I was still working. And I am not talking about the work load.

Back in the days when I was working, it was extremely stressful for me whenever I see little man sneeze or cough, because back in my mind, I know it could develop to something big. Then I had to start thinking about who to take leave if little man is sick. Do we still take him to school even if he is not feverish? What about my students in school? Do I have anything for them to do during this time that I need to be away to care for my baby? Do I have enough childcare leave? Does Hubby have enough annual leave?

My work does not allow me annual leave. I only have 6 days childcare leave in a year, which are not even sufficient for a one-time hospitalisation of little man. Poor hubby has to be the one taking leaves. We are really grateful that he has understanding bosses, but we are constantly worrying that eventually this will leave a black mark in Hubby’s potential progression.

To be able to put my entire mind on little man, is the best thing I can ever do for him as a mother. We have grown so much closer these months, and I feel like little man has learnt much more than he had back in infant care.

The situation that led to this decision, is really a blessing in disguise.

God has a plan for us. Through these experiences, I start to believe, and learn to let go, and let God.

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