"What did you do today?"

I thought this was cute…

What did you do today? This article title from NYC Moms, a site dedicated to all things pertaining to motherhood in the Big Apple, caught my interest last night. The author begins:

“An innocent question. Yes. But, for whatever reason those five words can stir up the most amazing flurry of emotions when asked by my husband.”

She also writes:

My husband is not the problem here. He is truly interested in what I do during the day – no matter what it is. And he’s truly interested, for lots of reasons, as to whether or not I have showered. I, on the other hand, am the problem. On the days where it’s me and my boy, I can’t seem to get a single darn thing done. Oh, except care for my son and our family’s every need.

There’s the rub, yes? We, as mothers, don’t see the “things” that we do for our offspring and our families as “accomplishments”! Maybe since we feel we are obligated to do them, whether we want to or not, we cannot view them as productive to-dos, and feel a bit silly “checking” them off. Maybe it’s because the tasks themselves seem like no-brainers, and we rarely look at the whole of the effort it takes for us to DO IT ALL.”


I ate this article up.
This mom nailed down exactly the insecurities I routinely face as a timid, often unsure of my accomplishments, stay-at-home-mom. As I sometimes lament to my older sister, “what does busy really mean as a SAHM?” Am I being as productive as I can be even though I’m not conquering a list of assigned tasks given to me within a defined 9-5 time work period?

My accomplishments each day are often not easily definable. They are random, sometimes bordering on the level of cleaning toilets in terms of how special or glamorous they may seem to me or others in the moment. And as I’ve learned, no one day ever looks even close to the same as the one before. But as this article reminds me, “Maybe since we feel we are obligated to do them, whether we want to or not, we cannot view them as productive to-dos, and feel a bit silly “checking” them off. Maybe it’s because the tasks themselves seem like no-brainers, and we rarely look at the whole of the effort it takes for us to DO IT ALL.”

The truth is that like any job, this one does take effort…emotional, spiritual and I would argue much physical strength as well. Often my arms feel as though they’re going to fall off by the end of the day and, admittedly being a sensitive person, if my husband makes a wrong move…or what might be misconstrued in my mind as wrong anyways, I easily break down or tear up anyways simply because I have been drained to the max emotionally. This is especially true now as Micah tests the limits and nears the scary twos.

As SAHMS we are our own bosses, giving ourselves varying tasks throughout the day and berating ourselves continuously at the same time for always feeling we have failed to live up to the job. Let’s cut ourselves a little slack and reclaim what really is a highly productive, honorable calling. And when our husbands get home, feel pride if/when they ask us that innocent, 5 word question…

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5 Responses to "What did you do today?"

  1. Jason and Kim Vinson says:

    I completely agree and struggle with this as well (athough I’m not a SAHM right now but will be soon). I’m amazed at how much blogging, reading, and mommying you get done right now especially being pregnant. So, kudos to you!

  2. Sandra Wood Peoples says:

    Thanks for the article and your thoughts! Some days I’m more ready to answer that question than other days, but every day I hope to say, “I did my best with what God gave me to do today!”

  3. Rick says:

    Amen! And I’ll reclaim the question “what did you do today.” I consider myself lucky to have found a rare jewel – a biblical woman who values these things. And now that we’ve moved to NY I think I have the only one. =)

  4. Susanna Rose says:

    Kim-Thanks for the encouragement!Sandra-Thanks for commenting! I really appreciate your reminder that at the end of the day, it should be our desire to have lived as best we could to glorify God!Rick-You know I try!:) “I’m not where I need to be-but thank God I’m not where I used to be”

  5. The Matriarch says:

    Just doing the best you can day by day = faithfulness= eventually, your children rising up and calling you blessed!

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