A common complaint I read about from stay-at-home moms is that they’re lonely. Sure, there’s the baby (and in some cases, the family pet), but their daily interaction with adults is minimal. I’ve unknowingly prepared to adapt to this aspect of motherhood the last few years by working from home. My only onsite coworker was my dog. I eventually got close to some of my offsite coworkers via instant messaging, which made my daily job much more fun and led to great friendships. For the most part, though, I flew solo from the time Arthur left for work until he came home.
And while the job now is definitely different – if only you got paid to be a human milk machine! – I’m less lonely than I ever was before Rowan. I feel slightly less crazy singing and talking to my baby than I do when it’s just my dog; moreover, being off the corporate clock and on baby time has allowed me to connect more with friends who also have untraditional work schedules. My friend Laura, who’s a labor and delivery nurse and helped deliver Rowan, brings us lunch and visits regularly. I get to recharge with her while she gets snuggle time with Rowan – win win!
We also get to socialize on a regular basis with my other friend, Krystan, and her daughter, Lorelai, who’s only two months older than Rowan. Going through pregnancy together was a lot of fun, and having babies together is even more so! We used to go for regular walks with our dogs, and now we do so with our children. It’s a free way to get out of the house and enjoy adult time.
Krystan and I also run our usual errands together – we’ll load up the kids and head to Target or the grocery store. We’re doing the activities we’d already be doing but in the company of a good friend. And the baby exchange we’ve come up with helps us get out of the house sans the little ones, too. Instead of having to hire a babysitter when we want to have a date night with our husbands or run solo errands, we drop our munchkins off at each other’s houses.
Perhaps things will change when I don’t live so close to such great friends who provide me with the social support I need, but for now, I’m grateful for this time and the friends who make it all the better.