Super Sort Of Mom

Why is it that whenever I plan to write my blog there's an interruption? For weeks, the little voice in the back of my head that reminds me of various forgotten tasks has been screaming, "BLOG! BLOG! BLOG!"

Finally, Griffin is taking a cat nap. So, I'm going to see how much I can write within the next 15 to 30 minutes. :)

As a work-at-home mom (WAHM), I have already mentioned that my enemy and friend is time. There's never enough of it in a day to complete everything I need to do. Eventually, all of the tasks on my to-do list cancels each other out, resulting in a a house that looks like it was either robbed or the chest of drawers exploded.

But now that I have some months under my mommy belt, I've discovered something I didn't know about myself: I am not perfect and I can't do everything.

When Griffin was first born, I practically tied a cape around my neck. I took two weeks off and then jumped back into work. I also tried to manage housework more than I did before a child came into my life.

Did I mention I had an emergency C-section?

But soon after we brought Griff home, I was forced into bed with an infection —probably because I was doing too much (future mothers, let this be a warning to you).

Why is it that most women, especially mothers, feel like they have to do everything themselves? For me, I felt like I had no choice. I thought, "If I can't cook this meal, how am I supposed to raise a human being?"

Apparently, I'm not the only one inflicted with Super Mom Syndrome. Take, for instance, my good friend Natalie Roers, a morning television news anchor in Columbia and voice-over artist, who also works part-time at home while raising a soon-to-be toddler, Austin. 

Over the last six months, Nat and I developed a mid-afternoon phone support group. The conversation usually begins with, "You won't believe what Austin/Griff did …" I don't know what I would do if I couldn't vent, cry, laugh and ask for advice from Natalie.

Here's what she has to say:

Any work-at-home/stay-at-home mom who says she didn't have an emotional breakdown some time in that first year is either an android or lying through her teeth. The first year is TOUGH. Not so much the baby, but just juggling everything: the house, work, alone time, time with your spouse. A baby changes their schedule all the time and just when you think you have it down they change again. It's maddening, especially when you have a deadline, or haven't slept in two days.

Natalie also often tells me to put balance in my life with a schedule:

A schedule will make your life so much easier. Every day I have alone time built in, time with my spouse, time to play, time for Austin to learn to play along, and time for him to play with others. Make sure everyone in your home has balance. Write down a few versions of how you can make your day flow better until you hit on  a schedule that just works for your family. MAKE your child take a nap at the same time every day. They are happier and so are you.

This is something I only recently put into action, and I'm still trying to work on. As a small business owner who often works with short deadlines, it's nearly impossible to determine what each day will hold. My husband works nights, so he generally watches Griff between noon and 3 p.m. But there have been many times I have had to bring my little drool monster to meetings with me — which usually results in a funny — albeit embarrassing — story.

For instance, Griff has a bad habit of trying to talk over people. Have you ever seen that Tide commercial with a guy who goes to a job interview with an eyesore of a stain on his shirt? Every time he starts talking, the stain starts babbling. That's Griff!

During a brainstorming meeting in a busy restaurant, Griff loudly shouted, "Da Da Da Da" while pulling my shirt down and exposing my bra-clad boob for the world to see!

And, most recently, I had to leave an early morning committee meeting because he was letting out this squawk-like pterodactyl screech.

Needless to say, the little man won't be coming to many future business meetings with me. Luckily, we live in a community with compassionate, understanding folks. My Fuse843 colleagues love to take turns holding Griff!

But as much as I love my son, I need a break from him. Last week, while Mike watched Griffin, I spent a good portion of my afternoon at The Corner Perk in Bluffton, getting uninterrupted work done. (I also munched on a slice of Girl Scout Thin Mint cheesecake. Mmmm ….).

Even though I was working, I felt like I was taking a break. For that brief moment, I was a human again. I could go to the bathroom without singing "The Wheels on the Bus." I could pour over e-mails instead of speed reading, update my Facebook status more than once, check up on my friend's blog and read a magazine.

Every mom needs alone time. She needs to feel like a human being, not just a singing burp cloth.

Moms, make a date with yourself.