Honestly, I remember the friends of mine who have lost a baby (myself included), tried to get pregnant and failed, or tried for a long time before getting pregnant, or are unable to have children when I have a rough day at home with my children. These women want a life with kids, and sometimes I am not sure I can take another day.
No one thinks staying home is easy, especially those of us who do it. Not that working outside of the home is easy either, but the ‘me time’ is built into the situation. When I worked, the commute was heaven. It was my time to cool down from my crazy day dealing with children in my preschool classes before I got home to my husband. I would listen to music, or drive in complete silence depending on my mood. It was ‘my’ time and a little traffic jam was just another added amount of time that I got to myself.
Now, ‘my time’ is my family. That is what I signed up for when my husband and I decided to start a family. I just decided that is how I am going to view it. I asked for this, I wanted it, I got it, and I am not going to wish it away! Motherhood is a calling.
I made the choice to have children and need to accept all that that gift requires me to sacrifice. I decided to put another life ahead of mine in the line of priority.
What DO stay-at-home moms do all day?
You provide this world the promise that your children will be productive citizens. You make sure they are prepared to enter school, social situations, and the world with the skills required to give more than they take.
Yes, it is a heavy burden. It does not earn gold stars, bonuses, promotions, degrees. It requires you to recognize your own value.
Reassure yourself that what you do every day contributes to not only your family, but the greater good.
Some days I wish I could get more ‘thank yous’ from my children and husband. If you volunteered at a food shelter and complained about not getting a ‘thank you’ after you placed mashed potatoes on each person’s plate, you would feel pretty petty. Why is it that we SAHMs worry about not getting enough payback from this job of taking care of children, a spouse, and a home?
How you know you matter
Just yesterday, my husband said to me, “Weren’t you going to get your hair done? When are you going to do that?” I told him, “I am not sure when I can schedule it. It would have to be a Saturday when you are home.” He replied, “That’s fine. Just be sure you come back.”
Wait. What? Yep, he implied that I may have too nice of a time on my own away from him and our children that I could choose to just not show up at home ever again. (He was joking. I would never consider this…well, maybe only in the midst of teething wake-up calls through the night, and major temper tantrums, but other than those two times, never!!) Now, if I was not paying attention I may have missed a major gold-star-receiving moment! He told me he needs me, and that he values the time I give him and our family. Now THAT is recognition. That is better than a pay increase or a promotion. I can keep his comment to fuel my value for a long time.
Feed yourself with value and soak up the moments that reward you instead of not recognizing them. Pay it forward. You are on the greenest pasture; no need to look over to the other side of the fence. You have got what many want. What a gift! You do plenty every day.
What are the tough challenges that make you wonder if staying home is worth it?
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Enjoy your time at home!