Oh, You're Just a Stay at Home Mom
If you have chosen to stay home to take care of your family I’m sure you have been confronted with the idea that you don’t do anything important because you do not have a job outside the home. When you get asked the question “What do you do?” you may feel like you don’t have a good answer. I hope after reading this you will think differently about this question and how main stream America is wrong about the value of your life.
You make a difference…
Whether someone has survived cancer and wants to support research to heal others or someone has lost a child to binge drinking and they want to warn parents and young people about its dangers there is one thing they almost always say. “If I can reach just one person it will all be worth it.” Pastors, activists, teachers are all committed to affecting someone in a life changing way. People fear living their whole lives and never making an impact.
Well, wake up Mama. You are dramatically affecting at least one person with your choice to stay home with them (more if you’re like me and have multiple kids). You are sharing your knowledge with them. You are teaching them right from wrong. Showing them how to handle things in life like relationships, money, handling emotions and the list goes on. Their entire existence is different because you are there. You will reach at least one person and that will make it all worth it.
You are a solution to the problem…
Why are kids so bad these days? This question is postulated by experts and lay people alike but there does seem to be a resounding common thread. Parental influence or lack thereof. No one can deny that when a child is allowed to make their own decisions without someone to set and enforce boundaries they will suffer. They may eventually get themselves straightened out but the risk of them causing severe pain to themselves and others along the way is great. You are part of the solution not the problem.
You are lucky…
Sure, parents who work can still be good parents with a positive influence on their children but when you have to work outside of the house 8 hours a day your attention is naturally divided. Also, those 8 hours a day (usually more) the kids are in someone else’s care. Working parents spend less time with their children each day than teachers and caregivers. You are lucky to get to stay home with your kids. Some families don’t have a choice. If one parent isn’t able to make enough to support the family or there is only one parent to make an income having mom stay home is not an option.
Nobody on their deathbed has ever said "I wish I had spent more time at the office".
-- Rabbi Harold Kushner
You have nothing to prove…
When it comes right down to it you have one of the most demanding jobs on the planet. It doesn’t end at 5PM. It presents new challenges every day. It demands self-sacrifice and hard work. It requires organizational skills, social skills, and critical thinking skills.
To sum up...
- You make a difference
- You are a solution to a problem
- You are lucky
- You have nothing to prove
I don't know anyone who would argue that this list is a sure sign of success. Don't let poor concepts of what it is to be a stay at home mom cloud that fact.