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Saturday, April 4, 2009

Bieng a Stay At Home Mom-

The other day, my son's friend asked me what I do for a job. I said I am a stay at home mom and I have lots of jobs. She then asked, "Ya... but what do you do to make money?" I explained that I don't really have a job that makes money- that my job is taking care of our home and my family. She seemed very perplexed by this- apparently it wasn't a very good answer. My son jumped in and said: "But she sells her aprons and makes some money that way." This seemed to finally satisfy her.

But it got me thinking.

When my mom wsa a child, it was very strange for your mom to work outside the home. My grandma was always there to kiss skinned knees, help with homework, comfort an upset child- my mom didn't know what it was like to have her mom go to work. True, she had 7 other siblings that took parental attention away, but she always knew her mom would be home when she needed her. Today, it is rare for a mother to NOT have a job. My mom worked and I was responsible for getting my homework done before she got home from work. (of course, I'd watch t.v. until I heard the front gate rattle, then bolt off the couch and dash into the kitchen and pretend I was laboring over my homework!) I also made the meals. My mom was a single parent, and she had to support our family. I appreciate how hard it must have been for her.

I always thought I'd be a working mom, myself. Until I actually got engaged, I always imagined I'd be a professional singer, or a psychologist. When I realized I was actually going to be a mom in real life, my priorities changed. I knew I wanted to be there for my little guy when he needed me. I didn't want to worry about getting work off to be with a sick kid, or let some day care raise my kid. I am very blessed to have a husband who earns enough for me to be able to stay home. We've certainly had to make MANY sacrifices to do this,(renting out the basement, driving old beat-up cars, not going on vacations, wearing Walmart clothes, not eating out often-) but it has been worth it!

I've never worked harder in my life then I have being a stay at home mom. Cleaning up after 3 people (and several little friends) is a lot more work than I ever imagined. I can't even begin to wonder what it is like for those with more than one child! I get bogged down in day-to-day life: laundry, dishes, mending. Then, there's being there for my son when he gets home from school. I have to put everything aside and listen to how his day was, his concerns, discerning his needs. When he's sick, I might as well forget getting anything done! Of course, it all happens again when my husband gets home. (They're really just like having another kid, right?!)

No. I don't get paid for any of it. (I started my apron business to do something for myself, but I don't have time to pour my heart and soul into it- I have too much to do around here! It's a nice creative outlet, though.) Sometimes it feels like thankless work, but then there's the hug from my son when he says, "Mom- I'm glad you don't have job. I don't know what I would do if you weren't here when I got home from school." It warms my heart, and I know I am doing something right!

6 comments:

Kim said...

You are so right, Erin. It is the hardest job there is, but it's also the best job there is. Thanks for the reminder that we're doing the right thing for our kids.

Jen said...

I hear ya! Why is it that people don't think being a stay at home mom isn't a valid job. The list of things I do in a day at my "non-job" could take out anyone's list of stuff they do at work...and I know yours could!

Ruth said...

I think I've said this before, but I always put on any application, or doctor office history... occupation- domestic goddess. Proud of it...even if we are going extinct. Weird huh?

Jess said...

What a great post. I've never done anything more difficult or more rewarding in my life. Hopefully my kids will thank me too!

Ryan and Shannan Hoffman said...

I really admire how you guys made the choice to have you stay at home. You have such a wonderful little guy and a happy husband because of it. Being a mom is the hardest job of all, I agree!

Andrea said...

This is not a job for the faint of heart.