|| Feeling Respected As a Stay At
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Mom Staying At Home
"Why are you wasting
your education and brain?" and "I wish I could just stay home and do nothing."
These are just examples of some of the comments stay at home moms must endure.
While anyone whos ever stayed home with their children for any length
of time knows that it takes brains to raise kids and you almost never have
a time when you are doing nothing. Yet these comments are still made on a
regular basis. I have been a stay at home mom for almost three years. In
that time, I have learned more about time management, being efficient and
staying on the go than I ever did in the corporate world. I was a paralegal
for 4 years before stepping into the challenging and rewarding career of
stay at home mom. As a paralegal I would tell people what I did and they
would immediately seemed interested, ask legal question or tell a lawyer
joke. As a stay at home mom I tell people what I do and they ask me if I
am bored. It is sad that people look at moms who stay at home in that light.
I would never criticize a mom who chooses to work outside the home. That
is her choice, and she is entitled to it. I realize that sometimes there
is no way for a mom to stay home and I respect that. My choice is not always
the best or only choice, I just wish for more respect for what I have chosen
to do. It is not just people it is also the media. There are constant articles
and tip sheets for working moms. Where are the tip sheets for us that stay
at home moms and where is out support and respect. There is so much emphasis
on the material rewards of work that sometimes it is not recognized that
good parenting has more valuable rewards; not just for the parents, but for
the children, too. I am not saying one way or the other whether being a
stay-at-home mom is harder work than holding down a job outside the home.
I am saying it is a different kind of hard work, and it deserves respect
as well. I have to keep in mind that regardless of others' opinions this
is the right decision for me. There are studies that show that children turn
out just as well adjusted with or without a stay at home mom. I dont
know about studies and figures but I do know about my own experiences of
coming home to a snack and my mom being there to go over my day with me.
Those days are memories I will always have not of a day care center or a
babysitter but of my mom balancing and juggling so she could be there for
Before my daughter turned two years old we had moved 4 times. I felt grateful
that I didnt have to find a new sitter or day care in each new state.
Her world was constantly changing except for me being there each and every
day. My second child was born prematurely and I was thankful that I did not
have to worry that someone else was taking the extra care that he needed.
My husband is very insistent that its "our" income. I appreciate that
kind of thinking, but I find that it is still somewhat difficult to treat
myself to a new article of clothing, makeup, or other such pampering after
having provided those things solely on my own before. The important thing
is not who brings in the money, but how well, as husband and wife, we work
as a team to provide the whole picture for our family. People who have never
stayed at home may not look at it in the happy way I do or with the positive
spin that I see. Knowing my husband respects, supports and encourages my
decision has become far more important than any comments I receive.
Going to one income calls for a major budget overhaul, its usually
imperative that some material things are given up. I wondered how we were
going to manage it, but we have. Its amazing how some things can be
done away with, and we really do not miss them. Somehow we always get through
the month without bill collectors knocking down our doors. I believe that
being forced to change our spending habits made us see our lives in a new
perspective. Less tangible things become valuable to us. Playing with the
kids and cuddling with a book replace trips to the mall for a spending spree
on things that would be forgotten in a week. Looking into the future I see
that my greatest gift to my children will be my love and time.
WRITTEN BY: Kelli publisher of free monthly e-zine for stay at home moms.