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Day 1: Soaps and Bon-Bons

The first thing I noticed: people don’t know how they should feel about my choice. They ask me when I’m going back to work, and when I tell them I’ve chosen to stay home with the new baby, they turn their heads away (in either embarrassment or shame, I don’t know). It confuses me, because I am neither embarrassed nor ashamed. I am a mother.

The second thing I noticed: I have no idea what I’m doing. It seems simple enough in theory: stay home each day, care for our newborn daughter, home-school our 4-year-old daughter. Make breakfast, make lunch make dinner. Do laundry. Keep the house clean. Smile, laugh, play. Stay awake. Such a simple list, such a difficult list.

As I embark on this beautiful, scary, rewarding journey, only one important question resounds in my mind:

What are bon-bons, anyway?

The image of the stay-at-home mom has always been well-defined: the woman in hair rollers, laying on the couch watching cheesy soap operas and eating bon-bons. Well, I’m already 0-3. I don’t own rollers; I choose to damage my hair with constant heat application instead. Though I used to watch soap operas as a teen, I tried to tune in recently and most of the characters were new, and the few old characters had all-new identities thanks to sex changes and/or personality disorders. And most importantly, I have NO IDEA what a bon-bon even is… though I’ve eaten a fair assortment of cookies. Does that count? (Perhaps an in-depth Google investigation is in order.)

All of that aside, the third and final thing I’ve noticed: I’m lucky. Lucky and blessed, to have this chance. The chance to be with my daughters, to be their mommy at all times. Of course, I’ll go back to work one day (hopefully by the Fall). But until then, this is my choice, this is my life. And I’m loving every scary/crazy second of it.

TO BE CONTINUED…

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