The adjustment to being a stay-at-home mom
The adjustment from working full-time, to part-time when having my son, to being a stay-at-home mom has had its challenges. I want to take an opportunity for some vulnerability and share how my blogging hobby has helped me.
I love being home with my son, I truly do. We are also living in one of the most beautiful cities in Germany. Honestly, I couldn’t ask for a better location! But I would be lying if I didn’t say that I’ve had struggles with this role full-time.
With these struggles, I have also learned a good bit about myself. I love to have challenges, to figure out puzzles. It makes sense as to why I love working in medicine and cosmetics. I love the variety and problem-solving. I need growth.
The lack of growth
As a stay-at-home mom, it was a challenge to grow mentally. Aside from growing as a mother (even though I feel like I’m constantly failing at this task) I haven’t had much self-growth. The German language has been a great project, but learning it has been much more challenging than I had originally anticipated.
Not only was the self-growth lacking, but I found my self-identity dwindling, falling only into the mother and wife role. And I feel like I’m frequently failing at these.
After some great consideration, I decided to start blogging. At the time, I didn’t realize what all goes into making a “successful” blog- which in hindsight is a lot. It’s a big project: establishing a blogging hobby.
Blogging has been so much work, and honestly, I wish I had so much more time for it! My “free time” is generally during Liam’s nap time, and I’m fighting the urge to take a nap myself. It’s been a constant conflict of interest, especially while pregnant.
What I’m learning is that this blogging hobby is so much more than writing. I am still trying to wrap my head around all of the ins and outs. From making my website (which was a labor of love, and is still an ongoing project), social media, Pinterest, research, photos and so much more!
I don’t pride myself on being a great writer, I’ve never considered it a strength. I am embracing the amateur blogs, and running with them. Maybe people won’t read my posts, but it truly has been a form of self-care. I have enjoyed looking back at struggles and the strengths/ knowledge and insight that came from them. I say self-care because I’m doing something for myself. Being a stay-at-home mom and wife, I prioritize myself last. This is MY project, for me.
The benefits of my blogging hobby
It’s been a challenge, being an extrovert and living in Germany. Between the never-ending tasks and responsibilities of a stay-at-home mom and the external language barrier, I find that I keep more to myself. This is very unnatural for me. I want to talk to people, the need to have adult conversations, it’s how I recharge. My son means the world to me, but talking to a toddler all day, every day isn’t exactly recharging.
I wouldn’t say that writing has replaced the need, not even remotely, but it has given me a bit of an outlet. Which has been so welcoming! Writing down my thoughts, ideas, suggestions, problems, etc has been quite therapeutic. Aside from the occasional writer’s block, I look forward to writing posts! It truly has benefited my mental health. This blogging hobby has given me actual opportunities for growth.
Check out this article from Harvard Business Review and how hobbies can make you a better person. Read Here
How I find opportunities for blog topics
I find myself thinking about different topics all of the time! Which has also been quite therapeutic for engaging my brain.
When we travel – I’m constantly thinking about any issues we are having, and how we may problem solved them. Packing, daily activities, what we did wrong, etc. My hands are usually full, so I take mental notes. Sadly, I only remember a fraction of these ideas. We took a two our toddler to a Italy for two weeks, and I have so many topics to write about!
When I am out and about with my son. I will often think of ideas while we are out walking, at the play ground, even if we are out eating. Laying in bed
Sometimes when I’m up laying in bed, thoughts will pop up in my head. If I am alert enough I will quikly jot down any ideas on my phone.
How do I find the time?
It can be challenging to find time to develop hobbies for stay-at-home moms. I take advantage of my son’s naps. One day he may crush a 2.5 hr nap, and the next it could barely be an hour. This window of time truly isn’t a lot, and I’m balancing that with household chores and cooking. I frequently am sacrificing a nap for myself. Sadly, I have no help, so this is my only free time window. Therefore, I try to take advantage of it as much as I can. I like to dedicate certain days to writing (if I’m in a writing mood) while others will go into research, editing, or social media (my weakest link). I do try to incorporate something into my morning routine if I wake up early enough.
How has this blogging hobby helped me?
A practice in self reflection
Keeping my mind actively engaged about my blogging project, I am finding myself looking inward. Asking myself questions. Could I have handled a particular situation better? What are some helpful tools that I could have used in that situation? How can I change my perspective to help me with an issue (especially when it comes to parenting)? I am realizing I have so much to learn, and that it is possible to have some type of growth while being a stay-at-home mom. I am also realizing that I have learned and lived through many things the hard way- especially when it comes to military life. There is so much I want to say!.
The anticipation of one day going back and reading my posts
Embracing the long term goal, because I’m a long term type of girl!
I can’t wait to look back a year from now and see how far I’ve come. To see what will come of my amateur blogs. To look back at the many challenges I had, and hopefully, see what started as a hobby for stay-at-home moms blossoms into! The fears I had conquered, and how I put myself out there. It would be extra special if someone found some of my posts helpful, that would be the icing on the cake!
This has been my labor of love. I’ve found pride on working on this by myself! All of the mishaps and lost time has led to achievements. This has been my own journey, and I have been pouring myself into it. It’s something I love to look at, and beam with pride.
Find your hobby
Being a stay-at-home mom is tough. The workload is 24/7, and for me, the burden is far more than when I worked full-time! I can’t say that I’ve been bored as a stay-at-home mom, I just needed a sense of identity and an opportunity for self-growth.
I encourage those who may be struggling, to find something for you! Some type of project that will give you fullfillment and growth. That will help give you a sense of identity! It could be anything from writing, cooking, or even training for some type of physical activity. Do it for yourself first! If something else comes from that, well that’s an added bonus!
What are some of your hobbies that you have picked up? I would love to hear about them! If you’re on the blogging journey as well, how have you found that it has helped provide some identity? Thank you!