The one where I have so much to do that I don’t know where to start

You know when you have so much to do that you honestly don’t know where to start?

Yeah. That.

I seem to have reached a point of feeling like that every single day *sigh*

When my youngest started nursery this year, I was absolutely devastated at the thought of ‘losing’ my baby but she settled in so amazingly well that I couldn’t see it as anything but a good thing. She was getting so much from it and I started to think that maybe I could get used to the idea of having a couple of hours to myself every day. I could catch up on boring housework stuff but without interruption so I would fly through it, I would get time to myself to finally make a dent in my ever growing pile of books to be read, I would have hours to write without having my train of thought interrupted, I could work out instead of having to do at stupid o’clock after the little ones are tucked up. But it just hasn’t turned out that way. In theory, I have never had so much time to myself in years but in practice? I feel like I have never had so little time. Not just for me but for all the housewifey type duties too. I just feel like I’m constantly chasing my tail.

Mornings are manic getting up and three of them off to school. Then it’s home with my three year old but now that she is in nursery from lunchtime, I feel like our mornings just disappear. Then I’m back from the nursery run but before I know it, it’s time to go and pick them all up again. Then of course my older children have a million and one clubs and activities after school not to mention normally ending up with extra children around to play and homework to be done. Then I have dinner to make before I am on to the hell that is bathtime and bedtime. Life is just mad right now. And whilst I honestly and truly wouldn’t have it any other way, I can’t help but sometimes feel lost in the whirr of it all.

One of the main problems is keeping on top of the housework. Just tidying, not even real cleaning, seems to eat up so much of my time. I swear my children spend their time taking everything upstairs that should be downstairs and downstairs what should be upstairs for me to put it all back again. And ironing. If I don’t iron every single day, I swear the pile gets so big that if it were to avalanche that I would possibly lose a small child. It’s just lots and lots of little things that just add up and up making the smallest of tasks seem somehow much bigger because of the overall sinking feeling that I am just a rubbish housewife right now.

I know that I’m lucky to be able to stay at home. Really very lucky. Many of my mummy friends have all of this plus hold down a job outside the home too. In fact, I used to be one of those mummies and now don’t know how I ever did it. If I’m struggling now, how did I ever manage when I was working a forty hour week on top of my mummy duties?

I don’t even feel like I have the right to moan if I’m being honest. I have all I ever wanted after all. What is wrong with me? When did it all become so overwhelming? And more importantly, how on earth do I get back on track?

From time to time, and now more than ever, everything just feels like too much.


15 thoughts on “The one where I have so much to do that I don’t know where to start

  1. mummyinahurry says:

    Good to know I am not the only one who feels like that. I used to think that once my children were at school, I would be super organised, and now it seems like I can never get anything done. I was far more organised when I worked, and had a cleaner, and childcare, and no-one messing up the house during the day! Maybe its the change of seasons and the fact that we are inside a lot more now that makes it seem like the housework is never ending? I try to pick up some tips from Coryanne over at housewifebliss, whose blog I love. She makes it all look so effortless. I wonder if she might be available to come and help a few of us out over this side of the pond?!


  2. itsamumsworld says:

    I don’t know how you do it, I struggle with half as many children as you have! I totally get what your saying though, I’m new to this stay at home mum thing, and I can’t get my head around how I used to have time to work, to get those teenagers through their GCSEs! It’s non stop from before 7am til I crash into bed at silly o’clock. Even watching a film with the hubby has to be something I schedule in the diary! You’re supermum, just remember that! x


  3. Fiona (@nlpmum) says:

    I’m there. I’m beginning to realise what mum meant when she refered to herself as the taxi service. I have one in nursery year and a six yr old and what with pick ups every day at 11.30 and then a never ending round of clubs it seems like I’m constantly on the go. Kinka looking forward to September when Hamish starts school, but I’ll have to have a job by then. It’s easier when they’re not going to nursery! At least then the day isn’t split up.


  4. Ruth Gelson says:

    Its all such a struggle sometimes – not trying to moan but I have 3 jobs and 3 little ones. I do my cleaning job before they get between 5.30 & 6.30, come home do the manic breakfast, drop two at school and one at Grannies go do my “Day” job at a Museum, pick everyone up at 4 do tea and the millions of classes they have put them to bed and then go out and do my evening job as mobile beautician. Go to the Gym and then pass out on the sofa about 11pm ………… Not sure when I signed up for this life but I clearly missed the small print lol!! Thank god for Mummy’s little helper BOTOX !! We will all get there girls !! High five to us mums!


  5. marketingtomilk says:

    I’m at home now ANd i’ve got a cleaner. I was supposed to let the cleaner go when i quit my job, but i just can’t bring myself to do it. comning back on a thursday is the happiest day of my week. it’s better than chocolate. it’s better than sex. god damn it’s even better than prosecco…hold on, i don’t notice the dirt after a bottle of prosecco. Well it’s better than the other two.
    Maybe in the new year….


  6. Karen (kbmanc) says:

    I’m sure I could have written this exact post word for word. I have been feeling exactly the same recently. I too have 4 kids, 16, 13, 5 & 3 and my husband works away all week so I’m on my own, with no close family nearby.
    I seem to spend all day tidying up, picking up and putting away. Just keeping on top of the washing and ironing is a full time job and cleaning nowadays is a quick run round with the hoover and a duster in the spare hand!
    My youngest starts nursery in January and they are really flexible on the hours. Doing mornings only didn’t really give me much time to do anything before picking up time. So we’ve chosen for him to do Mon 9-3, Weds 9-12 and Fri 9-3. This way I know I have a full day at the beginning and end of every week to catch up on everything. A bit of time mid-week too. I’m hoping this balance will work for us. I guess we’ll find out soon enough.
    Is there anything you can change to ease the pressure? Hope you’re slightly reassured by the fact you are not alone and don’t allow yourself to feel guilty. It can be over-whelming at times, especially at this time of year when there is so much to do. Hope you get your sparkle back very soon lovely xxx


  7. aconfusedtakethatfan says:

    This is exactly the same as my life…I thought when my youngest started school I would have all this time on my hands. I feel I have less. I find the cleaning and washing and ironing the stuff that actually stops me doing as much as I’d like. It’s constant. As is the housework. When I worked, the house didn’t get as dirty and I don’t remember having to do as much tidying. I think the housework gets me down the most. I often wonder how my mum did it. But I know deep down. No computer distracting her! She came home from school run, made the beds, hoovered, cleaned the bathrooms, put a wash on and basically did her housework all morning. Then had the afternoon to meet friends, relax with a magazine, watch a bit of TV before the school run.Plus she enjoyed housework and felt a sense of satisfaction and pride. I love the house being clean, I just hate doing what I have to do to get it all like that. It’s like having homework….Agreed as well, never feels as bad when the evenings are lighter as you spend more time at the park and out!


  8. TheBabywearsPrada says:

    Oh I feel the same and, like Marketingtomilk, I also have a cleaner and I only have one baby! So it sounds like you are doing a great job, crikey I do not know how I would manage! Oh and I don’t do any ironing, don’t even know if we have one – if it needs ironing I don’t wear it again. I ‘shake’ things when wet and that way they look ironed (ish)…..


  9. Becky says:

    I was like that last year with youngest 2.5 days at nursery. Seemed like no time at all before I had to go and pick him up before getting his sister from school! I find that when I remember to use a timer as per the programme to time 15 minutes its amazing what I can do..


  10. AmsterdaMummy says:

    You are not alone, not by a long shot, I think you are typical mum, but don’t be so hard on yourself, it takes drive and energy to co-ordinate people and the mundaneness of housework. I have one at nursery and one at school and work during the week, I’ve taught myself to be happy if I get one little job done a day – I am less stressed about it all since making that decision. I have to say though, that Ruth Gelson is amazing doing 3 jobs, and on her feet from 5.30am till 11pm – credit to you and hope you get a lucky break soon so you won’t have to work 3 jobs.


  11. (Mostly) Yummy Mummy says:

    Thank you all for the lovely comments – here, on Twitter and in private (you know who you are – mwah!) In a way just writing it down helped, as is often the case I find! But your many wise and kind words, as always, were most appreciated xx


  12. Coryanne says:

    Loved the honesty of your post and in the comments, blushing that I was mentioned — thank you. But the truth is I take each day at a time, enjoy the small victories and try to remember that my list will only grow, not shrink as time goes by. Using a household management book is my key, and keeping to a routine, just like at work. Hang in there darling, we all have days where we wish we could get more done. All the best, Coryanne


  13. schoolrunmummy says:

    This is exactly how i feel right now! I have one at school and one at home full-time and never seem to finish my to do list before im back at the start again. Hats off to you with 4!


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