Monday, January 16, 2012


I have a time problem. Two actually.

I don't have enough time to do everything.

And I don't have enough things to do with my time.

Wait, what?

When my husband gets home from work at night, he often asks me why I didn't take a nap. (Particularly when I was up all night the night before. Like I have been for a week now.) I tell him I didn't have time. He thinks that's ridiculous.

"Well, she only takes one nap now. That's only two hours."

"So, sleep for two hours."

"Well, then how am I supposed to clean? And make myself presentable? And eat?"

"Umm, put her in her high chair or playyard. (Didn't we cover this before?)"

And I get unbelievable irked. Does he have no idea what it's like being home with a toddler alone for 11 hours? Does he really believe that in those 11 hours I have time to take care of her, keep the house in decent shape AND take care of me?

Except, I think I probably do.

My days home with the toddler consist of a lot of chasing her around and stopping her from pulling things over on her head. While having my computer to twitter nearby to keep me from going absolutely stir crazy from the boredom and tedium of it. A task which twitter only minimally fulfills. 11 hours is a long time.

Is BG okay with just wandering around the house, opening drawers and flipping over trashcans all day? Probably. Although I'm sure she'd rather do something else once in a while. But for me? It's not enough. Not nearly enough.

I want to read and to write and to run. I want to take a nap during the day when I'm tired. I want to go for walks in my neighborhood, and go to playgroups and classes. I want to keep a nice house and cook and bake. I guess I probably can't do all of the above every day, but most days I don't do any of it. And it makes me feel like a failure.

When I think of what I can do in a day, somehow I only think of the two hours of naptime. I think that I need to fit all my working, playing, and sleeping into two hours of the day. So most days I make a choice, and as soon as she wakes up I regret it. "Oh, I should have slept. Now I don't have any energy to chase her." "Oh, I should have cleaned. I should have written." Some days? A nap will go by and I won't even have done a thing because I'm so tired or so overwhelmed as to be paralyzed.

Two hours a day isn't enough.

I need to reclaim the other 9.


  1. My god you sound just like me when I was home during my mat leaves . . . particularly the first one. I was convinced that the only time I could do stuff around the house was when the kidlets were napping but then that meant I didn't get a chance to rest after being up several times during the night.

    Pretty soon I found myself unable to get anything done . . . it was all too overwhelming. Brad cooked and cleaned . . . I felt like a huge failure.

    What worked for me was letting go of my expectations about what I should be able to do and focused on what was best for myself and the kiddos on any given day. Some days they would let me get some cleaning done or cook something for dinner. Other days were spent playing or heading out to a playplace. Sometimes I would just sit on the couch as one of them cuddled in for a nap and tried hard to remember that this will not last forever.

    You are doing a great job! Give yourself permission to let go of expectations.

  2. You and I have the exact same life it seems. I felt the same way when my daughter was little. And now that she's 5 and in Kindergarten, you would think that those almost 7 hours alone would make my life so much easier. But the house is still a mess, I didn't rest enough, go to the gym, make the cute crafts, and dinner is a mess. I always feel overwhelmed and one step away from failing miserably.

  3. Please let us know how reclaiming the other 9 hours goes. I find myself in a similar situation trying to get everything done during nap time and it never feels long enough.

  4. I can totally relate to this. I always feel the same way about having no time but then not filling my time. Its such a paradox. Thanks for putting it out there.

  5. Like I always say, we're so much alike. I have so much on my to-do list that I often feel paralyzed. So I don't do anything and then kick myself because I feel like I have so much to do and didn't do it and then can't remember what I did with my time. Sigh.

  6. Hi! I am new to this site, and to blogging in general. I am a stay at home mom of 3, starting a small business doing private cooking instruction, and looking to find a venue to connect with other moms who feel as trapped as i sometimes does this work? read and comment, or is there some type of a chat forum as well? Thanks!

    1. Hi! I'm so glad you're here. Yes, we read and comment on each other's blogs a lot. I also belong to SITS and BlogHer, which are great blogging communities for women.

      We also connect a lot (a LOT) on twitter. If you're new there, find me (story3girl), and I will take care of you. HUGS. Feeling stuck and disconnected is the hardest thing. Welcome.

    2. Hi! Thanks for responding! I guess then I subscribe to the blog? Start my own? Thanks for your advice / insight!

    3. I would love if you subscribed to my blog but I'll still love you if you don't. ;) I think starting your own blog is a great idea. Let me know if you do.