A Day in the Life

The days are long, but the years are short, they say. Right now, I am in the trenches of the “long” period of motherhood. I’m ridiculously outnumbered day in and day out by this tiny army that I painstakingly grew and nurtured inside of me.

My days are long. I wake up (late, of course) after a night of climbing in and out of bed to nurse my littlest back to sleep. I go to get my littlest so I can groggily change her diaper and nurse her yet again. At this point, I am so parched, I feel like I have crossed the Sahari desert and my canteen is full of sand. I let her play on her play mat while I sleepily watch her from my bed.

The nights are too short. I hear my older two yelling my new name (“Mama!”). I go to get my oldest to put her on the potty. She informs me that her night diaper leaked. I start stripping her bed as I hear the plaintive cries of my middle child. I go in to see her holding out her hands streaked with poo as she informs me they are “dirky.” I drag her to the bathroom, getting poop all over my shirt, and start running the bath. My oldest on the potty says that she also wants to take a bath. I shake my head at her and bathe my middle child. I drain the water, dry and dress my middle child, finally get my poor oldest off of the potty, dress her as well, and carry one while the other holds my hand down the stairs. I hear my littlest fussing on her play mat upstairs in my room. She is getting sleepy and needs her morning nap. I toss my dirty shirt in the laundry, wash my hands, and put my littlest down for her nap. I hear voices from downstairs declaring they are hungry. I strip the other bed, lug all the sewage laundry downstairs to put in the wash. I wash my hands again and serve the older girls some breakfast. I can’t leave them alone, so I guess I’m showering during their afternoon nap. I do my best cleaning myself up in the sink. They are done with breakfast, so I have to mop them both up and clean up their utensils and trays. The stack of dirty dishes in the sink is starting to look like Everest. I guess I can do that during afternoon nap too.

The years are short. I cannot believe I have been at this stay at home mom thing for three years already. Seems like only yesterday my oldest was born. The older girls proceed to ransack the play room. I try to sit down to read some emails, but my oldest has just announced that she needs to poo poo on the potty. I take her into the bathroom to do her business. I hear a crash and a wail from the play room. I run to the scene of the accident to pick my middle child up and kiss her bumpahead. My pantless eldest runs into the room to announce she has done her business. I chase her back into the bathroom to clean her up and wash her hands. I put the washed laundry into the dryer because my middle child will need her favorite blankie for her nap. (It is a hand made one, so I can’t buy a replacement.) I hear a fight brewing in the play room. I go back to break it up. I hear my youngest crying from her crib. I go upstairs to get her, change her diaper and dress her. I go back downstairs to nurse her while the two others play. By the time she is finished, the older two are hungry for lunch. I put her in the exersaucer so I can prepare lunch. I run back and forth trying to toss food in front of two hungry toddlers as quickly as possible. I try and throw something together for myself. The older two need refills and the youngest needs her lunch as well. I feed the baby with one hand while I shove food in my mouth with the other. The older two have been done for a while and are starting to throw food on the floor. I mop up the baby and go to mop up the older two. I add some more dishes to Mount Everest. I try and sweep up the floor. I guess I can try and eat something more substantial during their afternoon nap. Add that to the list. I put all the sheets back on the toddlers’ beds. I put on the toddlers’ shoes and let them go outside. I get the baby set up in a Bumbo in the shade. I try and check those emails again when my middle child starts wandering away. I go chase her down and bring her back. I notice the sun is really bright and begin slathering them both in sunscreen. By the time I am finished rubbing sunscreen all over two unwilling toddlers, it is time for everyone’s afternoon nap. I put the baby and the Bumbo back inside. I run back outside and drag two truculent toddlers inside. I change the baby’s diaper and go upstairs to put her down. I change the middle child’s diaper and go upstairs to put her down. I put the eldest on the potty and put a pull up on her once she has peed. I put her down.

I go back downstairs and try to remember my nap time list. What was I supposed to do again? Empty the dishwasher, do the dishes, fold the laundry, eat something, shower, clean the floors, pay the bills, put everything back in order in the backyard, tidy up the play room, check my emails, make some calls, zzzzzzz. I am awoken by the baby’s cries. Time to nurse her again. Only a matter of time before the girls wake up and I do my morning routine all over again. Hopefully without having to clean up any poop this time. And then cook dinner for everybody. Rinse and repeat.

The days are long, but I have never been more content. I will always cherish these short years. Because when they say, “I love you, Mama,” at the end of a day that felt like it would never end, it makes it all worth it. Hang in there, mamas. The days are long, but the years are short.


About sylcell

Wife, mom of four girls, Catholic, insatiable sweet tooth
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17 Responses to A Day in the Life

  1. I just came across your blog the other day and I love your words. I have 2 little ones and your days remind me so much of mine. It is nice to know someone relates to the crazy days that I love so much. I will also miss these days, thanks for the reminder. Now to go chase down my little ones.


  2. keldiaz says:

    Thank you so much for your words. I consider them encouragement. Now with my 4th just turning 1, I’ve decided to leave my career of 13 years to be a SAHM, and never been more nervous. I know it’s for the best, and especially with your noted reminder the years are short- my oldest is going in to 2nd grade. Just seems like yesterday he was the one learning to walk.


  3. I feel as if that is something I could’ve written myself! 🙂 It sweetly reminds me of when I had my first three, as well. The years really are too short! My oldest will be seven in September and my sixth is just four days old. Boy, I still remember my oldest at this newborn age, and, before I know it, my now-newborn will be almost-seven. *sigh* 🙂 So bittersweet!


  4. Amanda says:

    I love this. I am constantely reminding myself that these times with my 21 month old are so short, to enjoy them. With a baby on the way I often question how I’m going to get it done. But there is literally nothing I’d rather be doing. I love how you make it seem awesome and not burdensome.


  5. dsudatta says:

    I totally understand how the days are, but I’m so glad you’re enjoying them. Of course, that’s what makes everything worth.
    It’s much better for me, now that they’re 5 and 2 and a 1/2. But I’ll admit I miss those days 😉
    God bless your beautiful family.


  6. dsudatta says:

    I know how you feel, but I’m so happy you’re enjoying it. It’s started to get much better for me, now that they’re 5 and 2 and 1/2. But I’ll tell you frankly, I miss those days 😉
    God bless your beautiful family.


  7. susinnaomi says:

    To have three is one thing, but three so small? Wow, hats off to you mama 🙂


  8. morgan says:

    OMG. You just earned my deepest respect. Or should I ask you what kind of description drugs you get? 😉
    Just that, that sort of daily routine is what drives me totally crazy. The reason why I told my beloved hubby that IF HE wants someone to stay at home until all of them reach the age of three (where it is magically okay that you give your kids into childcare, a.k.a. kindergarten) than HE has to do it.
    Maybe I’m wired the wrong way (or the world’s biggest failure on the mom part), but there’s only so much I can handle.


  9. Rebekah says:

    I don’t know if it’s much consolation, but that sounds like heaven! I have a little 9 month old and Lord willing, we would love a house full! I long for the days of “long days, short years”. Hold fast, because unfortunately as you know, this too shall pass. 🙂


    • sylcell says:

      It is so weird, but it totally is wonderful! Exhausting, yes. But so sweet. And 9 months is one of my favorite baby ages. Congrats on your little one and hopefully many more!


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