This chunk’s for you!

I have learned that when you are a mom, your days are divided into “chunks.” Mine goes a little like this:

  • 8 a.m. to 10 a.m. Baby Boy is awake, and we’re together.
  • 10 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. Baby boy is sleeping. ***1.5 hours of productive time***
  • 11:30 a.m. to 2:30 p.m. Baby Boy is awake, and we’re together.
  • 2:30 p.m. to 4 p.m. Baby boy is sleeping. ***1.5 hours of productive time***
  • 4 p.m. to 8 p.m. Baby Boy is awake, and we’re together.
  • 8 p.m. until I fall asleep. Baby boy is sleeping. ***2-3 hours of productive time***
I have three chunks of time every day. Things are a little different when Darling Husband is off (because we use those “productive time” chunks to go out, do things, etc.), but on a typical day, these are the things I fit into my “productive time” chunks:
  • Freelance writing
  • Work-related phone calls and emails
  • Cooking
  • Cleaning
  • Blogging
  • “Me” time (reading blogs, watching TV, reading)
Lately it’s been a lot of the first two (and almost none of the last two). And I think that’s becoming a problem.
Monday was an especially rough day, where I was finishing a project until 10:30 p.m., and then had to spend 45 minutes tackling an obscenely dirty kitchen before I could crawl into bed. I’d hurt my neck/shoulder by sleeping on it funny the night before, so I was hunched over the sink in tears, thinking Why don’t I have any time to myself anymore? Why am I doing dishes at 11:15 p.m.? The answer was that if I didn’t, they’d be there in the morning, and I needed that naptime to finish another project. It’s always something.
I talked yesterday about how hard it feels to juggle everything sometimes. 
I hate feeling like I’m counting down to naptime because I desperately have to finish a project/send an email/return a work phone call. 
I hate feeling like I’m not fully with Baby Boy when I’m with him. 
I hate that there is no time for me
I hate looking at my crafty blog posts and feeling jealous that I don’t have time to try anything.
I hate that I feel resentful that this is probably the only maternity “leave” I’ll ever have (read: paid leave), and I am spending it working so much because we need it.
Darling Husband doesn’t like to see me like this. He wants me to start devoting one “chunk” of time every day — either one of the naptimes or the post-bedtime period — to myself. 
I told him he’s crazy. That it will never work. There is always something I need to do, so therefore I can’t sit around watching TV when I have something hanging over my head. CRAZY TALK!
But then, on Saturday night, I did it. 
I finished my work during the afternoon nap timeslot, and decided that when Baby Boy went to bed, I would watch Black Swan (Darling Husband was working — he wouldn’t walk a movie about ballerinas unless Vin Diesel or Bruce Willis was blowing them up). 
I looked forward to it all evening, and was kind of giddy when I settled myself on the couch with a snack and a Diet Coke. It was like old times! The movie was great (although I was a little freaked walking down the dark hall to the bedroom), and I felt relaxed. 
That Darling Husband — he really does have some good ideas sometimes.
So I guess the point of this post is that I am going to try to do this more often. It can’t be every single day — for now, at least — but I’m going to try to make time for myself every couple of days. 
Otherwise, my head just may explode, and that’s not going to do anyone any good, right?

So what do you think?

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