Should You Be A Stay At Home Mom?
I'm a stay at home mother of three children. I have two different grades of home-schooled children, plus a baby. Imagine taking my child to the doctor and the person filling out the financial information on the forms asks the question..."Do you work?"
I know what they mean, but I can't help but reply, "Yes, I work, but I'm not employed."
I may go about the day trying to clean, cook, do laundry, bandage boo boos, homeschool, break up quarrels, wipe up spills, give baths, brush hair, change diapers and this is all just for starters. If I start to make progress I may go in another room only to find out on my return that everything that I'd just accomplished has been undone. Then, my darling husband comes home at night and wonders what I've done all day.
Being home all day with your kids isn't the cushy job that many think it is, but it's the highest paying job I know. You, and not some daycare worker or babysitter, is the one who gets to experience your child's firsts, and each milestone they reach. You are the # 1 influence in their life.
I don't mean to downplay mother's who have to work for a living. I know that there are some instances where it just can't be helped. I appreciate you mothers just the same, because you are doing what is necessary to make the best life for your child, and these will be qualities that your children will appreciate in the future. I know many of you who have to work would gladly stay home if any way possible. I'm not talking to you. However, there are many mothers that work when they don't have to. They want an income that will make it possible to invest in the finer things of life, not realizing that the greatest thing that they could invest in would be their own children. You may say, "My husband just don't make enough to get my kids the things they need." How do you define what they need? Things to make them popular such as the latest fashion on clothes, or the newest and coolest toys? Or is it love, quality time, and moral teaching? I'd say, when we really weigh the importance of the two side by side, the latter will always win.
If you are a working mom who would like to stay home with your kids but you need your income to help keep you afloat financially, then take heart. Let your children know that this isn't Mommy's first choice at the moment, and then show them all the love that you can when you can. Hold them, talk to them, and praise worthy accomplishments. Try to find time to connect with your child every day. Also, work to get out of debt. Start shopping at thrift stores, and start practicing frugality in every area possible. Take the money that you save and put it in a savings account. Save change. It all adds up. You'll be surprised that you actually can live on very little if you try. It just depends on how important it is to you.
After you save a little nest egg, start paying off some of your debts. Try starting with the smallest balances first, like a credit card with a low credit limit. Get these bills out of the way. When they're paid off, don't go celebrate with a chocolate sundae, keep paying the bill just like you did before, except to your savings account. After enough has built up, pay off something else, and so on.
I know this is a controversial subject, and I like to stay away from those as much as possible, but this is something that I feel strongly about. I have been in several situations where I could be an observer of both sides. I was a pastor's daughter for 16 years, the oldest of five kids with a stay-at-home mom, I've worked in daycare before I had my children and have even taught in school. I've seen the evidence over and over that children who have their mothers at home are happier, and the ones who have their mom replaced with other people or things (such as nice homes, great toys, etc) are overall more unhappy. Let me remind you, this is from an unbiased view.
So, if your not a stay-at-home mom, try to "work to stay at home." Remember, there are options out there to help moms work from home also.
We all love our kids, sometimes we just need to get our perspective. Don't let this article upset you, but use it as a way to make things better. Not only will your children be happier, but you will be too. Once your children are grown, they're grown. Never live with regret.