Workaholic Syndrome

I am like my father and his father before him:
Free-time is the death of us.
Case and point, my grandpa is a retired farmer. But he is by no means retired. He now takes old farming equipment, messes with it, and then sells it at auction. During his birthday party two years ago, after he was done eating, he left the group of family, went out to his shed, and got to work on some project.
My dad loves having projects–things to fix or improve. When he was stationed in Barstow, California, he became obsessed with geo-caching and that ate up his weekend. Now that he is “retired” (from the Marine Corps, but not from being a lawyer), and is in Utah, he has a yard. So, every time we go to visit, he is working in the yard.
I have had a job since I was sixteen. I have always participated in extra-curricular activities. I have always been a busy, studious student. I work well with deadlines. 
But, I hate down-time. As a child, summer was over for me after a few weeks: I had read all the books I wanted to check out for the summer, I biked, I played outdoors, I went swimming, I slept in late, I went camping, I had sleepovers. Now it was time to go back to school…which wouldn’t start for another two months.
As a teacher, Spring Break was hard me both this year and last. I got all I needed to do over the first half, so I could enjoy the second half, but never really did. Justin can attest–I get fidgety and nervous when I don’t have something to do or be working on. 
Last summer, although I still had teacher paychecks coming in and we weren’t stretched for money, I decided to get a part-time job at a newly opened Subway. I wanted something to do (the fact that my husband was in school and at work all day during the summer helped this decision). I didn’t want to be home all day with nothing to work on.
This summer will be the first time I don’t work! My school year is done the first Friday of June and Rhys isn’t due until mid-July. I have slightly considered getting a part-time job, but who would hire a 8-month pregnant woman who would quit after she gave birth? No one.
I know after having Rhys, I’ll be busy getting accustomed to being a new mom. Everyone says I’ll be busy. But, I still have to wonder, will I be busy enough? What will it feel like to not have to be anywhere at all during the day? To not have a solid, sturdy schedule? To not have deadlines? How will I react when school starts back up again? I will be taking about 4 weeks maternity leave at the beginning of the school year. But, how stressed will I be? How much planning will I do at home?
With all the other uncertainties of this summer (moving, when Rhys will come, Justin getting a job, etc) how I will react to not working? I’ve never really considered myself a workaholic until this year. I don’t feel that I put my job over my family, but I do enjoy working. I like the feeling of being on a schedule and having something to do, deadlines to work towards, accountability. So, how am I, as a workaholic, going to treat this summer of many, many changes? 
It’ll be interesting to see.

Tayler is a work at home mom. She does free lance articles and dabbles in graphic design and virtual assisting for bloggers. She spent 3 years as a history and English teacher. Her passions are her husband, two children, history, reading, nature, and her Savior, Jesus Christ.

  • My parents are the same way – they ALWAYS have something they're working on. My Dad, same as yours, works in the yard, on cars, bills, whatever. My Mom quilts, puts everything she has into her callings. So it wasn't a surprise for me to be the same way. What helps me to feel accomplished while still being a stay at home mom is to give myself things to do. So I fill my days with things I need to do like laundry and dishes and projects. And with a baby coming along, projects will be all the more easy to come by! There are so many things you can do! Quilts, stuffed animals, burp clothes, cloth diapers (if that's your thing…), little stuffed blocks, quiet books, FHE lessons for the future… the list is literally endless of things to do for your baby/future family. You can also work on a baby book or scrapbook because those are always priceless to look back at even just a year later. Even with my newborn, I would Pinterest, blog, and index while I nursed. It's SUPER hard at first, but once you get it down, reading a book or doing simple computer projects are easy to do and multitask. So, this got really long, but where I'm getting at with this is you don't need to have deadlines set out for you to be successful and feel accomplished while being a stay at home mom. Do your own thing and set your own deadlines! If it's something you thrive on, you can say, "I will finish this baby blanket in one week and work on it from this time to this time." What I love about being a stay at home mom is how I'M in charge of my time. I can use it or abuse it, and I love how I can choose to be productive and work on things for my family. You will find something to keep you busy and I know you'll love the one on one time you'll have with your little guy! It's time that you will NEVER get back!

  • I like to be busy, but I also like the freedom of not having set schedules, so that probably makes me not a workaholic. I can always come up with something to fill free time with–projects or outings or whatever! I'm happiest on days when I feel like I've been really productive!