Tuesday, February 24, 2009

Guilt-free mummies Unite!

Thanks Monica for this excellent post. It was just what I needed. Was beginning to feel guilt creeping up on me...

- for spending my weekends playing consecutive rounds of mahjong till Sean has to come and ask when dinner will be ready...
- when like Brian did some years ago, Sean is now saying I like using my computer more than spending time with them (pain! pain! it's like he's stabbing my heart! the little imp!)...I pretend to bawl and he concedes (not very convincingly), okay you like spending time with us more...
- for not getting back on track with doing academic work with the kids cos was too hooked on a silly spongebob squarepants pacman-like game. So hooked I couldn't blog for weeks; I'm over that now, thank God!
- for spending all my other spare time working on Killer Sudoku instead of chatting or reading with the kids.

Yes yes, it's all about Me! Me! Me! But by being selfish and taking care of ourselves first, we then have the capacity to be selfless and take care of others better. Happy Mum = Happy Kids.

When I was working, SAHMs would tell me I have it good, get to escape from the kids when I go to the office, and how hard being a SAHM was. But when I became a SAHM, I couldn't be more relieved. Some women feel they need to justify their existence by bigging up their role, if you're ready to flame me, then I'm not talking about you lah, why so sensitive! haha (Mon, I hate confrontation and deal with it through avoidance).

Case in point; my friend, really funny lady, would leave her vacuuming and household chores till the end of the day when her husband got back from work, so he'll see how much work she's doing. The rest of the day, we're hanging out in her kitchen, eating and chatting or having coffee at the mall! She does this so her husband will appreciate her more.

I know different people have different circumstances so I'm only speaking for myself. Being a SAHM is the easiest job in the world, these two monkeys give me so much joy and laughter no money in the world can buy; plus I don't feel like I'm giving up anything to be a SAHM. My friends tell me I should emphasise to the boys how much I am sacrificing to be at home with them. But that would be lying, I'm staying home with them because I want to, I'm doing this for Me! They give me more than I could ever give them.

I may jest about the antics my kids get up to (and Sean gets up to many!) but you'll hardly hear me complaining about how difficult it is to be a mom. To me, it just isn't.

I'm not saying I have a charmed life and nothing is difficult. I just don't make things more difficult than it should be. If the laundry piles up, so be it; it will get done, if not today, then tomorrow. If not by me, then by my husband :) If the house gets messy, plan for guests to come by and that will surely motivate me to start tidying up, with help of course (Sean btw is excellent in tidying up, he's my champion, mwak! love you sweetheart!). If we're late getting home and it's past bedtime, then forget about showering, that can wait for morning. It doesn't have to get stressful.

I have utmost admiration for women who have it all; a permanently sparkling kitchen, dust-free home, polite and intelligent children, loving and successful husband, a kind and generous personality. But I'm not gonna beat myself just cos I'm not one of these women. I'm just here for the ride, and being a mum has been like a joyride so far...wheeee...let's just enjoy ourselves and our kids and our time with them...entirely guilt-free!

16 comments:

monlim said...

I was laughing at your neglecting academic work for Spongebob game cos all of last week, I was so hooked on this new computer game. Andre came and said "Mummy, I need you to sign this", I went "I CAN'T DO THIS NOW, I'M SAVING THE OUBAS!!!!"

Lilian said...

LOL what the heck are oubas?! While I've been making crabby patties while collecting mustard to spray on those dastardly planktons.

Now I can happily reply Yes! whenever Brian wonders, "Do you think other mothers play as much computer games as you do?" YAY!!

monlim said...

It's a game I bought from Big Fish where the bricks keep moving up and you have to keep these Oubas from reaching the top where they get caged by the evil Garouba. When they're near the top, they quake and make whiney sounds, really hilarious!

Tell Brian I'm at my computer all day - does he honestly think all that time is spent working?? :D

monlim said...

The game is here - you can try it free for one hour.

http://www.bigfishgames.com/download-games/1373/oubathegreatjourne/index.html

Lilian said...

hehe, sounds like fun. Games at y8.com are entirely free, nothing sophisticated, but still, free is good :)

monlim said...

Cartoon Network has some cool free games, Big Fish has free games too but the paid ones are more sophisticated and have more levels :)

Lilian said...

Championlah you. My kids will love to have you as a role model.

monlim said...

cannot cannot, they'll end up playing computer games instead of studying for PSLE...

bACk in GERMANY said...

When I taught I was going to be a SAHM, I thought I could drink coffee and read papers and my kids would just play bricks next to me and leave me alone... But the reality was quite the contrary. I was so much in the schedule in the earlier days that I got upset with myself coz I couldn't clean certain things on a date I set out to... I should have read your post on "Being a guilt-free SAHM 101" first!

Yes woman, you are my role model now, even though I'm a SAHM with a two days work week :(

bACk in GERMANY said...

Alamak... when I THOUGHT... not taught... too much teaching for the day!!!!!!!!

Lilian said...

Why the sad face emoticon? I'd love to have your 2-day work week deal! A break from the monotony of home life, get to dress up a bit, feel economically-productive, yet it's 'just' 2 days. Great deal lah.

Hmm, you of spotless-bathroom fame, not sure if I can see you being bochap about house-cleaning :)

A friend of mine who's a neat-freak told me once that her girls complain that she never has any time for them cos she's always cleaning, cleaning, cleaning. I think that was to the point of obsession.

I mean, it's not like we're living in a pigsty haha (hostelmates who are reading this, no, my house is NOT like my hostel room aka warzone)...we're clean, we wear clean clothes, we get home-cooked food, we're able to find the stuff we need. So the bed isn't made up every morning...I never understood why we needed to make our bed when it's gonna get messed up again in the night.

But I did go through a 'miraculous' period which lasted a grand total of 2 weeks, when I kept a super tidy and clean house. This was when I discovered Flylady.com which help homemakers learn to keep house hehe, trust me to rely on the internet to motivate me. During that time, yes, the house was really clean, but I was such a grouch, nagging and snapping at everything the kids did which would leave a mess, even a teensy one. I don't think they enjoyed that side of me.

Li Min said...

Great! I am not the only mom who spends her time:
- reading her OWN books
- playing Sudoku
- surfing
- playing Klondike on her mob
- watching TVB serials

instead of:
- talking to the kids
- helping them with their work
- preparing proper food for the family

AND dh is suggesting I buy a mahjong set!! Horrors!

Lilian said...

Wah, your DH is so supportive! Li Min, you have a charmed life lah, just like Slim. I think mothers like us - talking about the bochap mums, not about charmed life - tend to gravitate towards one another so we don't feel so bad!

Go get a mahjong set, your life will never be the same again. I'm also looking for a nice new set, though whom to play with is still an issue, since our mj kakis will be posted to Paris in a couple of weeks :(

Li Min said...

erm... He is the one who wants to play mahjong more than me. I am like a reserve player. :( Think he wants me to hone my skills so that I don't lose too much...

haha... not sure about charmed life mum but definitely bochap mum! my only problem is I can bochap dd but ds needs me to chap!

Lilian said...

You all have kakis in Sg? If he's really keen to play, I know people who need kakis.

Li Min said...

Kakis are family members. IF all decide to play, think we will be arrested for operating a casino! haha...