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I missed a period a few months ago, took more pregnancy tests than I could count for several weeks till, finally, I ended up with a positive test.
This was our fourth pregnancy, and it was a shock. Not what we were expecting, to put it mildly. But, a few days later, I started to bleed, and a few doctor’s visits and some blood work confirmed that we had miscarried, most likely in the first month.
This, too, was a shock...and what do you tell people? How do you explain that there was life, and now it’s gone? I got home from one doctor’s appointment, lay on my bed, bleeding, and wondered at the irony of it--the body that had conceived, grown, birthed, and nursed three babies was now erasing all evidence of a fourth.
My kids are 4, 2, and 1, and I work from home without significant childcare. That is to say, while we have a very available grandmother down the street, I work 20+ hours a week at home mostly with my kids underfoot. It’s wild and it’s amazing how quickly naptimes and evenings disappear. If I’m going to get my work done, I can’t just work during naptimes and at night.
Behold, the marvels of independent play! Children who can play quietly and on their own, without much direction from me? Yes, please!
I’ve nourished independently play in my children from an early age, and it has made a tremendous difference in how much work I can get done now that I'm a mom who works from home. Here are the tips and tricks I’ve learned over the years:
"Does anyone else feel this way?” my friend Kristy said in our mom's Facebook group. “ I used to travel and be adventurous. I used to jump on a plane at a moment’s notice. Now, I spend all day nursing an infant and peeling the skin off grapes for a toddler."
Another friend is wrestling with late night fears as she puts her career on hold to be a stay at home mom. Is she wasting all the hard work she put into her career?
My friends’ concerns are echoes of mine. Maybe it’s because we’re (relatively) young, maybe it’s because our culture is obsessed with choices, maybe it’s because we’ve seen so many women struggle so hard when their kids leave home, but we all wonder at some point…