Monday, January 11, 2010

Home is where the heart is... My decision to be a stay at home mom

A long time ago, Kara asked me how I liked being a stay-at-home mom. While I have been busy, that's not really the reason it has taken me so long to answer that question. First of all, while I "officially" quit working with my client back in November I just now feel like I'm actually a stay at home mom. I was finishing up some stuff for them, then we traveled to see family in Florida, then the holidays... it's all a blur. It wasn't until the new year that I started to feel like my job was taking care of my family and not any thing else.

The other reason it's taken me a while to write is because there is a lot of emotional ambiguity in the decision for me. It was not an easy decision. I was totally burnt out on my work and ready to focus on my family, but was raised in such a way that this decision was not the norm. Unlike many of my current friends, being a stay-at-home mom is not seen as a positive in my family. Both of my parents came from families where their mom's worked outside of the home full time. I'm sure a lot of that was out of necessity, especially considering my maternal grandfather passed away when my mom was only 7. There is also a very strong pro-union base in my families. For a lot of them, they see staying at home as being lazy or unmotivated. Combine that with the fact that we really didn't know any positive examples of stay at home moms when I was growing up, and you can start to see why my emotions were all over the place.

If you had asked me in college, the last thing in the world I would have ever expected was for me to actually want to be a stay-at-home mom. Even while working from home, my mom used to talk about how unhealthy it was for me to be so "disconnected". And while we'd all like to think we no longer care what our parent's think, it certainly was waying on my mind. Never the less, my heart was really screaming that the place for me was to be home with my family. And with these angel faces... who could resist.

We were finally in a financial position where I felt we could make the decision for me to stay home without any concern. For the past few years my work has not been fulfilling in the least. It's not what I wanted to be doing, but the money and work environment (working from home with a fairly flexible schedule) was too good to pass up. Once we were debt free, had a fully funded emergency fund, and had gotten our budget to a point where we consistently lived on just Tim's income... it was time for me to step aside from the insane hours and follow my heart.

So, to answer the question - how do I like being a stay-at-home mom? - you'll have to wait for my next post to find out.

1 comment:

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