A Day in My Life as a Single Mom in Haiti While Starting an At-Home Baking Business
Updated: Jan 18
This particular morning started with an argument with my 5 year old son who wouldn't agree to go to gymnastics the next day with his nanny. I usually take him but this week I needed Wednesday morning child-free to work a bit. I did my usual threat of "you won't get this if you don't do that".... but that ship sailed its course a while ago.
Looking back though, having had this discussion early morning with a kid who hadn't had any breakfast wasn't the smartest thing.
Once the situation got more or less settled I went ahead and started my morning workout. Exercising 3 times a week is a must for me. I want to quit every single morning but I always find ways to convince myself to do it.
Been keeping at it for the last 10 months and I'm very glad I did. The mental benefits, I think, equal the physical ones. It's also an opportunity to teach my son consistency and the importance of self-care.
I'm lucky enough to be able to exercise with my sister which creates bonding and definitely helps with motivation ;)
My son and I rarely have the same breakfasts. We are both Pitta doshas so we're basically ravenous in the morning. I have more control since I'm an adult but Abe needs something ASAP in his fire belly. White flour bread being his favorite (cringe), we had come to an agreement.
The deal was that Abe could have his bread only if he has a veggie soup with it. Yeah.... right. I'll find remnants of white bread on his plate while the bowl of soup usually remains untouched... sigh. I'm not giving up though. Just bought a big bag of whole wheat flour to bake bread at home. "Dear Lord, please make the kid like it."
After chasing Abe for about an hour around the yard, he'll finally decide to clean up. So will I. Our official work day will then start.
Since he was on break that week, we
didn't have our usual 3 hour schoolwork day. I had planned some light activities like (crosswords, puzzles, etc..) but he kept waiting for me to add more work so we went ahead with Reading and Math.
I do send him to a nearby kindergarten twice a week to free up my time and to engage with other kids since he's an only child. But lately he's been telling me he feels he learns more at home than he does at school so he doesn't want to go anymore. Sigh (again)
How Do I Make a Living?
My sister and I run an at home baking business. We make healthy baked goods that we sell to supermarkets. We are in the early days of the enterprise so I can still work a part-time schedule, meaning I don't have to bake every day. Today was one of those freer days because I had baked double orders to stock up the day before.
Most times when I'm working, Abe is on the kitchen table trying to figure out additions (or something else) as I'm measuring, mixing and whisking while shouting over a running blender "JUST COUNT 2 MORE FINGERS AND YOU WILL FIND THE ANSWER". I have to find ways to keep him engaged while I'm busy. It was hard at first but getting easier now.
After lunch, my sister and I decide to work on our next product's label. Something very simple since our graphic skills are very limited. (I needed a photo to document that specific moment so we relied on Abe for the snap. Not bad I think. We are within frame. Thanks Abe!)
That day Abe has swimming lessons with his group of friends. He just loves swimming days! It's pretty cool for me too because I meet up with the other mothers and we just chat away about various things.
These chats are always opportunities for me to realize that I'm doing OK with Abe, as I tend to be hard on myself and always feeling guilty that I'm not doing enough or doing things wrong. But I guess that's every parent’s guilt trip.
This is also the same group he meets up with on weekends for arts and crafts and other fun things.
The group after swimming usually comes over our house. The mothers get together with my mom for their sewing classes while the kids go ahead and create all types of fun for themselves. As the adults quietly craft their latest project (pouch belts), the kids on the other hand put together an impromptu band and rock on! Abe being a social bee is too happy to have friends over.
Once everyone leaves, the night carries on with its usual routine of having dinner, chitchatting as a family and getting ready for bed. I'm lucky enough that Abe around sleep time is not at all fussy. By 8 o'clock, he's ready to wind down. Once he's out, I will take time to just relax, watch a movie or make plans for the next day. Whatever the case may be, I always take a minute to review my day and be grateful for all the small accomplishments that will in the end become the stories of our lives.
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