Being a stay at home mom is never what people think…well, unless those people are stay at home moms. I remember idealizing what this life would be like…wrong, wrong, wrong. But sometimes it surprises me in ways I never could have imagined.
An innocuous comment the other day catapulted me back into that realm where I began to think back on what I thought being a Stay At Home Mom was going to mean for me.
And the reality of where I am today.
I vividly recall talking to my mom on the phone when my firstborn was 3 months old. I was questioning where the hours in my day were being spent…I certainly was busy, but as far as anything tangible to show as evidence for all that busy-ness? Well, there was very little.
And while I am a strong advocate for mothers, when given a choice, to always choose what will make them a better mother…I have chosen to give up “work” in the traditional sense and spend my days at home with my children.
READ MORE HERE ON WHY WORKING MOMS ARE AWESOME!
But for anyone who’s considering this life…well, you have been forewarned.
Being a SAHM is to never have a moment to yourself. Like never. And if you think you are going to be sneaky and wake up at 5 am, you can guarantee one of your kids will magically wake at 5:05.
Being a SAHM is to have a schedule for how the day will go and have your kids laugh hysterically that you used the word schedule in the same sentence as their names.
Being a SAHM means that everyone will assume you have extra time…shopping for Christmas will be easy for you. Volunteering at school will be easy for you. Cooking home cooked meals is easy for you. Time, time, time. You apparently have all the time in the world.
Being a SAHM means finding validation in ANYTHING but money. I will never get a paycheck to show me my worth for what I do every day.
Being a SAHM means being an educator, an entertainer and a short order cook all the live long day.
Being a SAHM means putting aside your college education to use words like “poopy” “ouchy” and “pee pee” for 90% of your conversations.
Being a SAHM means never having a sick day…regardless of how terrible you may feel.
Being a SAHM means that some people will look down on you – for “losing” yourself or giving up your dream.
But on the flip side…
Being a SAHM means that you get to experience every single precious moment with your child – yes the bad and the ugly…but the good. You get to experience all the good. And there is SO MUCH good.
Being a SAHM means yoga pants and a t-shirt is acceptable “work” attire…and none of your co-workers will judge you if you skip makeup 3 days in a row.
Being a SAHM means flexibility – and the sooner you learn to embrace it, the happier you will be. Flexibility allows you to volunteer at church, pop in to have lunch with your kids or go to the park midday even if you hadn’t planned it.
Being a SAHM means using your education in a way that only YOU can to influence your children – your grammar, your behavior, the way you talk to them about the world…no one has taken your education from you. You just had to find new ways to express it.
Being a SAHM means taking a sick day for your kids whenever they may need it. The decision of whether or not they are “well enough” to go to school is an easy one for me. Because I know I don’t have to answer to anyone except myself. And for a mom who has a chronically sick child, that has meant a lot to me.
Being a SAHM means finding validation in the most simple of things – the smile of your baby when you’ve just cleaned up a blowout…an empty bowl from the dinner you made…a well earned cup of coffee…a playdate that was actually playful…a squeeze of your hand as they walk away from you into their class.
Being a Stay at Home Mom means you haven’t lost yourself at all…you have finally found your true calling.