I’m a stay-at-home mother. I am not better than a working mother. I am actually in awe of working mothers. They don’t get to do yoga at 9.30 am when the kids are in school. They don’t have the luxury of brunch on a Wednesday morning with a friend, purely for leisure. They have to go to work day in, day out, whether or not they feel like it. Their day doesn’t end when they get home. They still have to make dinner, give the children baths, put them to bed. Some have to work shifts, or overtime. I am in awe.
I’m a stay-at-home mother. I have many, many hours with the children. You can look at this as awesome, or as something you cannot possibly imagine, because OHYMGOD. That’s okay. As much as it’s joyful, I can tell you that it’s not easy. When you have a lot of something, sometimes, you tend to appreciate it less. A friend of mine told me that when she went back to work, she was a better mother. She was more patient, she yelled less, she appreciated them more. I can understand that. Some days, I think about going back to work, and feel little guilt about considering putting the boys in daycare all day. But I choose to stay home, because I know myself. I will miss them, wish I was with them. So I allow myself moments where I imagine I work, and revel in that for a little while. Then I realize that being able to stay home with them is my privilege, that I should not bitch about it, nor feel superior.
I’m a stay-at-home mother. I made this decision before I had children. Because frankly, I stopped enjoying going to work. I did not like the inevitable office politics, the need to kiss ass to move up, and working long, stupid hours. Of course I liked earning my own money, traveling on company coin, meeting people I would never otherwise meet. I will forever hold onto those fun moments of spending my hard-earned cash guilt-free, sleeping alone in luxury beds in strange cities, and building lifelong/ short-lived friendships. I can live with that. I’m at peace with my decision. It is MY decision. No one influenced me. No one told me this was “better”. No one. It’s no one’s beeswax.
I don’t really know where I’m going with this. I guess I just want to say, in my mind, there has never been any “mommy wars”. I have never judged a mother for her decisions, nor have I been outwardly judged. I never have – still don’t – care, question or judge someone’s decision to give birth naturally, with drugs, or have a C-section. Nor do I give a thought to who breastfeeds, who gives bottles; if they co-sleep or don’t; if they sleep trained or not; if they made their own baby food or bought it from the store. All I care about, as selfish and self-indulgent as it sounds, is whether I am doing a good job with my children. The only person I judge, is me.
And you know what? I think I’m doing okay. And so are YOU.
This post is not a response to recent er, events in the blogging world about working versus stay-at-home mothers. This is just something in my mind and heart, that I’ve been pondering.
Are you happy with where you are right now? Is it your choice? Or is it circumstance?