Parents and kids at the KAUST beach.
Photo used with permission, courtesy Marcos Aguilar.
A few days ago, I posted about being a non-working KAUST spouse. As I was information gathering for the post, I connected with my friend Patricia Ahicart-Vargas to ask her for feedback for my post. Her feedback was superb so I invited her to write a guest blog post describing a typical day for a stay-at-home mom here at KAUST.
Patricia is originally from Barcelona and arrived at KAUST about 6 months ago.
Thank you Patricia for including your voice in this space!
A day in my life
By Patricia Ahicart-Vargas
When my friends ask me about how I’m feeling being so far away from my family and alone the most part of the day I just smile at them and try to explain what is a “sample” day for me:
It’s 6:30am, time to start my daily routine, I need to wake up and get ready for the beginning of a new day.
To be a stay-at-home-mum could seem an easy thing but, believe me, it’s not.
Before having my breakfast I must change diapers, feed my almost 3 months old daughter, prepare my 2 years old one’s breakfast and have taken the two of them downstairs with the whole stuff I’ll need for the rest of the day ( if I want to save a trip to the upper floor).
I try to take advantage of my situation everyday, dusting and mopping at the beginning together with steam some vegetables for the lunch allows me to go out with the little ones during the morning; we go to the playground where my older one enjoys playing, meets other kids and looks at me with that smile in her face that means happiness… such a great time!
Before going back home sometimes we make a stop at the market to purchase some minor things (yes, minor… did you try to buy with 2 babies? Pushing a stroller while you’re in need of look after of another one baby and trying to carry what you’re purchasing can be just exhausting!)
Fortunately the afternoon is arriving, after more changing diapers, finish cooking, feed the tiny and give lunch to the big one it’s time to nap, for them of course, and to clean the kitchen and the bathroom or do the laundry for me; it’s also true that I use to have my moment then and take a look to the email and facebook and a little chat with my husband.
Around 3pm the next phase is already started, another round of changing diapers, feed my daughters and get them dressed up before going to pick up daddy… when I put everything into the car: babies, stroller, diaper bag with bottles, powder, wipes, change of clothes, pacifiers, toys and bottles, of course, I feel like we can just go for holidays!
We spend some family time having a walk or at some playground, maybe with friends and their kids and, just in a moment, we’re back home again (time flies when you’re enjoying).
On the third round of the day after giving another bottle for the baby we’re ready for bath time. I bath the little one and, while my husband is dressing up her, I bath the big one (we’re a good team!) and, quickly, we’re doing dinner and serving it. Time again for slightly clean the kitchen, put every toy, piece of clothing or any stuff on it’s own place and share precious time with my lovely family before the last round!
Finally the end is near…I put my 2 years old into her pajamas, take her to bed while she’s hugging her favourite doll and give her the sweetest good night kiss that I can ( I love to see her laying on bed so I’ll come after 5 minutes), change little one’s diaper and give her to daddy who’s going to give her a bottle (yes, I married the correct guy!) while I take a warm and very needed shower; everything becomes quite now.
Ok, it’s almost 11pm, it’s been a plenty of tasks day, just like everyday. Now I have some time to talk with my husband, relax and sleep. Hopefully tomorrow will be as good as today or even better.
Being a stay-at-home-mum is such a hard work, you need to set your goals, clarify your priorities, have a plan…your kids are depending on you, they need you and you must be ready for that. Sometimes it’s easier and sometimes is just like hell but, always, really, always, I’m happy. To see my daughters everyday is priceless for me and I feel very lucky for each moment that I’m able to stay with them. Of course I miss my family, a lot! but I have two wonderful babies to care about and I’ll do my best for them.
That’s the moment when I tell my friends how is a “sample” day for me here at KAUST, maybe not so different from any other mum’s day, maybe almost the same for all of those stay-at-home-mums out there and, maybe, the best days of my life.