10 Things I Wished I Mastered Before Becoming a Stay at Home Mom

1. Self-appreciation

I devote an enormous amount of time and energy into being a stay at home mom. My husband is appreciative and shows gratitude, but he works all day and doesn’t see first-hand what’s involved with homeschooling, cooking, cleaning, and raising our kids. My kids say “thank you” for the little things I do, but they don’t quite grasp they would literally die if their needs were not being met. As much as I appreciate their appreciation, it’s never going to silence that voice that says, I could be doing more or doing better. I’m the only one who can do that. I’m the only one who knows if I’m doing best. I wish I had learned to be really proud of myself and how to acknowledge the great job that I’m doing.


2. Confidence

There are a million different ways to raise a child, so it’s not surprising that everyone doesn’t agree with my method for raising mine. Being a stay at home mom means that a lot people are going to feel that they could do my job better than me and some will even voice their opinions. Because there will always be someone who disagrees, I need to have confidence in my choices. I need to be able to stand firm in my decisions and not be swayed by the opinions of others. Being confident in myself and my abilities is such a vital part of being a stay at home mom and I wish I had worked on that more before I had kids.


3. How to completely rely on my husband

I don’t make any money which means I have to trust that my husband is always going to take care of and provide for our family. As much as I love and trust my husband, that is a huge amount of faith to put in a person. Also, because I depend on him so much financially, I tend to feel the need to insert my independence whenever possible. I wish that I had worked on establishing a healthy balance before I quit my job.


4. How to ignore people

Kids have a lot to say and have no self-awareness. My kids interrupt me daily, hourly even. I wish I knew how to tune them out and just continue with my train of thought. I meet moms who talk over their kids with ease and I have no clue how they do that. There should be some kind of training for this.  Maybe before having kids I should have been required to wear headphones with music playing at random while trying to have a coherent conversation to perfect this skill.


5. They art of a quickie

Now get your minds out of the gutter. I mean the art of a quick meal. Three days a week my kids have extracurricular activities and when we get home we have less than an hour to eat dinner and get ready for bed. Which means, unless I already have something made, it’s a chicken nuggets and easy-mac kind of night. I wish I could whip up a healthy meal in a hurry.

6.How to not be lazy

Before having kids I didn’t even know I was lazy. That’s because before having kids I didn’t have as many responsibilities or time constraints. When my kids go to bed, I usually just want to curl up on the couch and binge watch TV, but I always have a ton of things that I should be doing. I wish I had the energy and drive to tackle all of my responsibilities. At the very least, I wish I had the desire to want to get up and do something.

7. How to make friends

Growing up you just have friends. Whether they live by you or you’re in the same class, friends are just everywhere and you don’t even have to try. Most adults make their friends at work. But as a stay at home mom, everywhere is my office – the park, my daughter’s dance studio, the gym. I have so many opportunities to meet people but no idea how to do it. I wish I had been offered a, ‘Making Friends 101’ class in college. Possible lessons: How to approach strangers without seeming creepy; Small talk and conversation starters; and Asking for another woman’s contact information to hang out without it seeming like you’re hitting on her.

8. How to nap

I am beyond happy for anyone who can nap. My kids nap every day and I always think about how nice it would be to lay down and nap with them, but no matter how tired I am, I just can’t seem to fall asleep. I don’t know if it’s because I feel guilty, or if my body just isn’t capable of day sleeping. But if I could nap, I would be one happy woman.


9. How to love other people’s kids

My kids have play dates and are around other kids all the time. I like all of their friends just fine, but I don’t think I love any of them. I have friends who love my kids and it fills me with so much joy to see them treat my kids with so much affection. I wish I could do the same with their kids. I try, but because I don’t really feel it, it doesn’t have the same effect. I wish I had spent more time around kids before having my own, so I could’ve developed a real love and appreciation for all kids.


10. To enjoy the moment

Anyone whose child is now an adult will tell you how fast it all goes by. I believe them. I still can’t believe I don’t have any babies in the house. But I just never learned how to truly appreciate and enjoy the moment that I’m in. I’m constantly thinking about the future and all the good times I have to look forward to. I know that I’m going to miss these moments of my kids being young. I wish I knew how to pause and take it all in and really create a memory that I can look back on later.
What’s on your pre-kids list? What do you wish you would’ve known or learned how to do before having kids?

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