The truth about WAHMing in summer

A conversation with my mother earlier today got me to admit something I’ve been mentally skirting: Being a WAHM during the summer can be really, really hard.

I’ve been trying to come from a place of gratitude, trying to focus on all that is good and wonderful. I have the right problems, after all — more than enough work (dare I say too much?), four healthy, active kids, a household buzzing with friends and family. A full and lucky life.

Which is why I start to feel torn in a thousand pieces when school lets out. What do I do with the 16-year-old who, try as he might, cannot find a summer job and is too old for camp? How do I manage to work with constant interruptions? (Mom, can you drive me to my friend’s? Mom, got money for the ice cream truck? Mom, there’s nothing in this house to eat!) How can I possibly clock the same hours I did when they were all guaranteed to be gone for at least six hours a day?

Part of my reluctance to admit that summer is hard is that it used to be so much harder. When those four little ones were all under 8, or even under 12, my life was not my own. The fact that I can work full-time at all, especially from home, is such a relief to me in light of how their needs have evolved that I feel guilty to admit it’s still not ideal.

No, they don’t need their noses wiped anymore (thank God). They don’t need me to watch them play outside, or make their lunch. But there is always someone needing my attention, and the topics they bring to me are often beyond a 5-minute answer or a 10-minute fix. Little kids need your hands; big kids need your brains.

So excuse the short rant. There’s really no time for indulgences — I’m on deadline.


About writearounditall

Welcome to Write Around It All. I’m Maureen Salamon, a freelance health & lifestyle writer who was a WAHM before WAHM was part of the vernacular. Four kids later, my days are a crazy cocktail of research, laundry, interviews, carpools, writing, errands and deadlines. I have it all, do it all and appreciate it all — most days. View all posts by writearounditall

4 responses to “The truth about WAHMing in summer

  • Phillip Randall

    You recently wrote an essay on milk. You missed a very important life threatening point on raw milk. The reason that raw milk is pasteurized is to kill bacteria. Probably the most dangerous bacteria in raw milk is the bacteria that causes tuberculosis. My brother-in-law died from tuberculosis that was attributed to his drinking raw milk. Also soy does not contain calcium. If you wish to drink soy milk with calcium you have to find on the label that the soy milk is calcium fortified with a digestible calcium supplement. There are two types of calcium mineral calcium that is not digestible and a digestible calcium that the blood stream will absorb. The USDA has investigated vitamin supplements and has found that 75% of the vitamin supplements are mislabeled. Therefore, one has to be aware of this problem if one wants to take “calcium fortified” soy milk

  • Summertime…WAHM… | Vintagemother's Blog

    […] The truth about WAHMing in summer ( This entry was posted in Homemaking, Work at Home Mom and tagged christianity, Family, Home Office, wahm, Work at home parent. Bookmark the permalink. […]

  • Sarah Scott

    Hello Fellow WAHM-er! I, too have been really having challenges with developing and sticking to a work schedule this summer. I’ve been working at home forever, but this is the first time all of my kids have been school aged and it’s just been hard. My kids are ages 6 to 16. What do you find has worked better? working for 2 hours her and there or working when they are asleep/gone?

    • writearounditall

      Well, my oldest boys sleep very late, so that takes care of some of the potential distractions. My daughter, who’s 11, goes to day camp from 9 am to 4 pm, so she’s occupied most of the time as well. My third son is probably the one who’s hanging around the most, but he’s not the type to get in my face.

      I have to say, I think the summer is working out better than I anticipated when I wrote this post. For the most part, I’ve been able to stick to my schedule of 9 am to 5 pm or so. And obviously, I can move some of those hours around if I wish. Thank goodness for the flexibility — without it, I’d be sunk.

      Thanks so much for writing!

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