04 Aug

How I’m “Making It Work”

Posted by Jenna, Under Parenting

I’ve been following Julia’s Moms Make It Work series for several months now, but had been hesitant to contribute because there was a very specific approach I wanted to take in writing my post and I knew that it wasn’t going to be appreciated by everyone. I was tagged on Instagram by someone who wanted to hear my perspective, and I decided that even if she was the only one I would give in to my inclinations and write out my account of our parenting approach, schedule, and how we balance it all.

Click here to read my Moms Make It Work post on My Life in Transition. It’s my attempt to talk openly and practically about the ways we juggle parenting and childcare, not just how I feel about it, but what I am physically doing to make it all come together.

juliatransitionteaser

 

It’s funny how much can change in a short period of time! I wrote the post back in May, and all of my houseguests left in July (still no luck getting my sister to move in with me, but I’m going to keep trying!). I also don’t have any regular childcare for T2 through the months of June/July/August while my babysitters are on summer break. I’m working hard to manage my stress about cramming everything into nap time on the weekdays (it feels like a ticking time bomb – tick tick tick – when will she wake up today?) but I think we should get back to our normal routine sometime between the transition from summer to fall. I’ve done more than one business call with a baby crying in the background, hoping the person on the other line can’t hear that she woke up early that day.

I think Julia is still taking submissions if you’d like to contribute as well. I’ve got to sign off for now – time for me to go make the peanut butter sandwiches that the kids will be eating in the car for dinner. :) (Don’t know what I’m referring to? Go read the post!)

14 Comments


  1. It would really be helpful for us moms to hear more about your therapy, if you felt comfortable sharing!

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    Jenna Reply:

    It’s with someone who is LMFT certified. I’m actually on my second therapist. First one was local, found via my insurance website. For the second one I sought out an ex-Mormon so we could get into some really specific stuff. I highly recommend it for everyone!

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  2. After reading that post, I’d be really curious to read more of your “day in the life” posts that you used to write years ago when T1 was a baby. With the multitude of sites you are running now, I think a lot of people would be interested to see how you spend your hours during the day. SAHMs everywhere struggle with finding the line between fulfilling personal wants when their biggest priority is their kids’ needs, meaning a lot of women don’t have the option to pay for so much childcare to fulfill that desire.

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  3. Jennifer says:

    Thank you so much for your open and honest account of how you make it work. It takes a lot of courage to open up to a new blog audience who is not familiar with you. I have been following you since weddingbee. I just want to say that it must be hard for you to share many of your struggles with the whole world, but I appreciate your strength to admit when you struggle and how you adapt to make things work. I also grew up in a family with strong faith beliefs that define them, and went to a religious college. I ended up walking away from that faith community and leaving college, and it has been a struggle for me to find where I now fit, and to not be angry about the judgement from the religious family and friends who make assumptions instead of having conversations with me. I have been slowly prioritizing my needs, and am starting to look for a therapist, and focus on the future and what I want and not the past disappointments. I always appreciate your posts, which help me to realize I’m not the only one who struggles, and it is best to make things work for you and worry less about what other people will think of my decisions. Thank you.

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  4. Good for you for getting the therapy and help you need to be the best mommy you can be to those two sweet babies! :)

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  5. Catherine says:

    I just wanted to stop by to say that I really enjoyed your post and I can’t even believe how overwhelmingly negative so many of the comments were. It makes me really sad for the sisterhood. Why are women so eager to tear each other down?

    Reply

    Jenna Reply:

    I really do not know :(. Thanks for taking a moment to voice some support.

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  6. Thanks for the post. I appreciate the honesty and directness. I think it struck a cord in so many folks because it was pretty real. There are so many ways to parent and your kids get plenty of love for sure.

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  7. Elizabeth says:

    I just started following your blog. I had read posts in the past here and there. I find your journey out of Mormonism totally fascinating. But also, I really appreciate your candor and honesty. It’s not often – or ever really – that you have bloggers who are really being honest about their struggles and the harder stuff in life. It’s all, my life is perfect etc. I also find that the comments and feedback are just so negative and give you props for not letting that get you down. You seem to handle that very well these days.

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  8. I also enjoyed your post. It called to mind a post I read about the variability of parenting ability. At scienceblogs.com/casaubonsbook

    I’ll do a terrible job of recapping it,but it’s brilliant.

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    Jenna Reply:

    I”m going to be mulling that post over for weeks. It was the really good kind of post, that I suck up as fast as possible because I can’t get to the next paragraph fast enough. And then when it’s over I want to read it through again, thinking about what different points mean and how they apply to me. Thanks for sharing Erin.

    There is a lot of wisdom in the last comment:

    “In grandmotherhood I face down decades of guilt and say, the proof is in the pudding, I was a good enough mother.

    My own mother once told me that when we kids were very little she prided herself on being so much better a mother than her friend and neighbour, but later events made her realize that she was just lucky, not better. There but for the grace of god, and all that jazz.”

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  9. I’ve never posted before but I was so disappointed by the comments to your post in the Moms Make it Work series and just wanted to be another voice saying that. I hope the woman who runs that site realizes that there is nothing wrong with your post or your story and that she stands by it and up to those who left such cruel comments.

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  10. Hey Jenna –

    This is Amy (formerly of Blue Jean Amy, which I don’t write anymore…but we used to chat/tweet a bit as my daughter Harper and t1 are the same age)…

    I’m really sorry for the ridiculous response to your guest post. I hope you know how cowardly and cruel those women are. Something isn’t right in *their* lives for them to cut you down like that — anonymously! For no reason!

    Anyways. Keep on keepin on. Being a mama to two (I just had my second daughter in February), especially when your man is a long-hours-working professional like both of ours, and when family isn’t near, is incredibly exhausting — and however we get by and love our children and manage our lives is going to take some serious juggling and tough choices. I commend you for finding a way to keep yourself sane and your children well cared for. Hang in there!! <3

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  11. Thanks so much for posting this. I really appreciated your honesty. I feel like I read so many things online that present the idealized version of parenthood, making the rest of us feel so much less than perfect (even though we know that no one’s life is perfect). Thanks for reminding us that reality is normal. Congratulations on “making it work”!

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      I'm a farm-raised almost-crunchy stroller-pushing picture-taking lifestyle-blog-writing gastronomy-obsessed divine-seeking thrift-store-combing cheese-inhaling pavement-pounding laughter-sprinkling lover of individuality and taking chances.
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