More often I have read blogs written by stay at home moms. I am not.
I work full time. I am married with two children, a dog, cat and a bird. I have never wanted to be a stay at home mom. Ever. I enjoyed my time with my kids during both maternity leaves (both of which I worked part time for half of each) and happily returned to work.
I have a full life but I also have days I do nothing – absolutely nothing…
BUT enjoy my family.
It took me a while to get to this place in my life where I am content and very proud to be a full time working mom. Realizing what truly is important to us as a family. I do respect everyone’s opionion, but of course I also have my own.
Why do I work…
I work to show my children that I am more than just “a mom”.
I work to show my children that living a good life includes working for a living.
I work to show my children that we get to do fun things together or go places.
I work to show my children the value of a hard earned dollar.
I work to show my children that school is important for when they grow up.
I work to show my children that it’s ok for them to be independent from me.
I work to show my children even though I am not with them all day, I am confident in my parenting skills and am involved in their daycare and school days.
I work to show my children that I do not have to work, I choose to work.
I work to show my children that life is never always perfect, but we have each other.
I work to show my children that there are times mommy can’t always be there, but I am always’s here.
I work to show my children that financial freedom is possible.
I work to show my children that it is very important to plan for our futures – their education and our retirement, while still having fun today.
I work to show my children that it takes hard work to achieve our “wants” in life.
I work to show my children that mommy is proud to contribute to our household income.
I work to show my children that mommy has a job and school is their “job”.
I work to show my children that I enjoy working and every day I am still learning.
I work to show my children that women can succeed in business AND have a family.
I work to show my children that I went to college and use what I went to college for.
I work to show my children that I have independence, apart from my family, my children, and my husband.
I work to show my children that everything in life is work, family life, marriage and friendships.
I work to show my children the family history behind our family company and be proud of being the 4th generation to introduce my children as the 5th.
I work to build a future for my family, together hand in hand with my husband.
Being a working mom makes me so very proud. No matter the amount of work.
Is it easy – no not always. I would be lying if I said I never thought twice about staying home the odd day just because. Do I wish I was a stay at home mom, nope. Is it selfish to say I work so I can buy things that I want to – I have a photography passion, its not cheap, I also teach my kids I had to work hard to buy the things I want. You cannot just expect or get everything you want, a valuable life lesson I remind them all the time. I am proud that they know there is another side to me.
I see my children each morning, each evening and every weekend. Due to my husbands sometimes chaotic schedule I do see the kids more than he does, however I am thankful they have such a hands on dad who is sure to take over bed time to have time alone with the kids himself if he happens to miss dinner because of calls. I once felt shame in admitting I couldn’t do it all, thankfully I no longer do. Really, who can? I am proud to say they have a very involved dad and that I am instilling confidence into my children of having their own independence, teaching them how to deal with any issues, problems or feelings and will always be there for them on the days they are sick or need me to be.
Throughout all my years of my children’s lives one thing that has been quite reassuring to me and almost like a backbone of their day’s is the daycare in the town where we live. As a full time working mom knowing that my children are not only being cared for by qualified, caring and loving individuals but that they are also being fed a very dynamic wide range quality menu. It was the daycare who introduced Hummus to my children and to this day is my son’s favourite snack! Of course much like anything of value or quality comes a price, for us this was not a question, yes two children in daycare is expensive but worth it! They received a well rounded play school education, quality, nutricious meals and snakcs and a wonderful base to begin their elementary education. I will never forget how difficult it was on me some days during drop off, yet I was reassured that as soon as I left the kids were quite happy and content and when I returned to pick them up they were reassured that mommy did come back.
Ive often thought of my maternity leave days, when I was home all day with the kids with what seemed like all the time in the world, I would have supper ready the minute hubby walked through the door, the house would be tidy (almost daily)… Laundry would be done and I had all the time I wanted to work on photos.
But a piece of ME was missing. Sure is life more hectic now? Yes. Would it be easier if I was a stay at home mom? Might be. Would I be happy? No. Would we live the same life we do now? No.
We do not live an extravagant lifestyle, we do not drive a lavish expensive vehicle. In fact we traded in hubby’s truck, years ago for a more practical “station wagon” Magnum and just a couple years ago made the financial decision to take a step back in vehicle years – but to be financially free (from van payments) sooner. Both my husband and I have shared a view of our future together and what we were working towards. Am I ashamed to admit that without me working we wouldn’t have achieved it? No, because it’s what we wanted to achieve together and for our young family. Which makes me proud. Proud that after just 7.5 years we are where we dreamed we would be with only a mortgage to pay off and even more future plans. Is it all about the money, of course not, however it has eased my stresses.
Yes as a full time working mom, I do in a sense have more work. I am away from home for more than 8 hours a day – working at my job and still have the house hold chores to contend with when we get home. I have to think ahead for meals or things for the kids that I cannot do when I am at work. I have however saved my santity somewhat by having someone come in and do the deep cleaning of our home – such a blessing! Another thing I am not ashamed of!
In a sense the past 7.5 years have been a slight blur, between trying to get pregnant, my own health issues being discovered, finally getting pregnant, having two children just over 17mths apart and all while both of us working (and hubby going to school as well). Its been a whirl wind. However a whirl wind that has brought us to land in a pretty awesome place. A place where, I am even more proud that over these years I did hold onto my independence as a woman and continue working. As hard as some days may be or seem, the hard work and not always clean house is SO worth it.
So am I saying stay at home mom’s have it easy? No I never did say that. Having been home with my children during two mat leaves just months apart, I know how difficult life can be with two very young children close in age or how isolated a mom can feel. This is the choice that is made, much like the choice I have made to work.
What I do not understand is, how being a “stay at home mom” is referred to as a “job” by many, it is not a job. Being a stay at home mom is lifestyle choice. Much like this is a personal decision for me to work full time. However, I will not be any less proud than I am for what I have chosen to do, nor am I any less of a mother because I have chosen to work and my children attended daycare. More and more moms are choosing to join the work force and yet still raising very happy and healthy children. Years ago it was the norm for the mom to stay at home, I do fondly remember a hot home cooked breakfast each morning, cookies baking bright and early, mom always did a lot of baking. But that’s not me! And society is changing.
Yes, Children are work, but Children are not a “job”. Yes I have a “job”, however I have never viewed my family or children as a job, this is what I have chosen to be my LIFE. My children and family are my life, my job is my job where I earn money to contribute to our life.
All mothers whether we are stay at home or full time working, all have the responsibility of raising our children, instilling in them the morals and ethics we want to be the basis of what they grow up with, to teach them life isn’t a game, it is about setting goals and working hard to achieve them. I teach this to my children, I raise my children – not my children’s care giver. Much like teachers in elementary school do not “raise” the children they teach. We all as mothers have the same goal – to raise happy and successful children. This September brings a new change to our family with our youngest beginning school and providing me more flexibility to be there for them when I need to in this next stage of our life! A new stage in the life of raising our babies! Another reason why many employers are becoming more flexible with working parents, not just because I work for family, my job is my job and I take it quite seriously.
I do look forward to everyday at 5pm, not because my husband is going to be home and can rescue me from my children but because I leave work and pick up my kids, we get to enjoy the evening as a family talk about our days and what we all did, we get to cook supper together or just kick back and relax. No, not every day before and after work is roses – but that is life. Being content with my choice and knowing that life will never be perfect is what I want my kids to grow up knowing. Knowing that its ok to have a bad day, its ok to cry, its ok to ask for help, its ok to say you need some time alone and some day’s you may feel knocked down but you will always get back up.
“Nobody said life would be easy, they just promised it would be worth it.”
My success does not have a dollar value but it does involve financial security.
Success to me is my family and our happiness!