I’ll Be There

I spent a lot of time outside the house when my older four kids were younger; I was either in school or working part-time, full-time, graveyards, whatever.  I’ve worked customer service, hotel front desk, classified school sub, and more.  When my 4th child was just 3yo, I went back to school full-time to finish my Bachelor’s.  I feel sometimes like I’ve done it all, been through some incredibly rough situations to try to help make ends meet and help secure my education.  I know I can weather any of it, and my family, too.

But.

Just about two years ago, when I was pregnant with my 5th, I quit my job as a school secretary and decided that if we could weather the stress of not having either parent at home full-time, then we could certainly try to weather the stress of living off one income.  It has NOT been easy.  Even with my husband’s promotion that brought us to Houston, it has NOT been easy.  We have a large family, and everyone knows the economy is not what it was even two years ago when I stopped working.  But for us, the decision has meant everything, and I know I’m where *I* (emphasis on *I*…I am not speaking for anyone else) am supposed to be.

I’ve had people tell me, “I wish I could afford to stay home.”  Yeah, me too.

I’ve had people wonder what I do all day, since I’ve only got one child at home.  Well, even though the other four children aren’t here, there are still needs to be met (groceries, laundry, keeping everything straight!).  I find it almost funny that people think you only have responsibilities when the kids are home.  When my kids are home, we’re doing homework, talking over their day, meeting church and/or extracurricular obligations, spending family time together.  Which means it’s a good thing I got the other stuff done while they were at school! 

I’ve had people wonder at my restricted interaction with other adults.  Or the lack of outside validation.  I guess I would say that’s why I blog (*wink*).

There are challenges to deciding to be a stay-at-hom mom, and I don’t suppose it’s for everyone.  But there are four words I get to say every morning that I haven’t always been able to say, and my gratitude for saying them is immense.  Every single morning, to each of my four school-aged kids, I get to say, “See you after school!”  And then I watch them smile, because they know it’s true.

  • Deb

    Thanks for posting this. I am trying SO hard to be where you are at and what I am learning is that it’s going to take a little faith in addition to all of my hard work. Still working on this, but hope to be there someday. xoxoxo

  • I’m so with you! And, when I worked at the office it was me, my schedule, my deadlines. Working from home is all the extras and the juggles and with one or two kids home and ‘living where you work’ their are constant messes to clean, constant laundry.

    Trying to work from home is wonderful. But, I still say we do more and sign up for more and take on more — maybe because we feel that we should be able to more because ‘we are home.’

    When I first became a SAHM my son was 6 months old when we were surprised with my pregnancy with Lil’Gal, I thought I’d go back to work when they were a few years older or entered school.

    I did take on a job for awhile and even though the kids were in two-a-day preschool and had a fabulous family member to keep them on off days; it was so hard to do both, and a juggle and I felt torn and like I was missing all the ‘good stuff.’

    So, home I am. And, I’m finding my way little by little earning some dimes here and a dollar there — making it the best of both worlds. And, God willing, I will never go back to the full-time office crunch.

    I want to be involved with the kids, their school, their homework, their activities. I am enjoying being ‘that Mom.’ The one everyone loves because you are always there and involved and a part of it. Super-Mom! Yep, that’s me!

    And, I LOVE IT!!! Keep at it! You are doing wonderful! (And, with three more than I). 😀

  • I guess I should add, that being a SAHM or a WAHM isn’t for everyone or every family. But, it’s a perfect fit for me and mine. Hats off to the Moms who are out in the workforce making their way for their families too!

    Either way you do it, being a Mom is work — but totally rewarding! 😉

  • “When my kids are home, we’re doing homework, talking over their day, meeting church and/or extracurricular obligations, spending family time together. Which means it’s a good thing I got the other stuff done while they were at school!”

    Ah, precisely why I want to stay home. I think it’s great that you have made it work. It’s my dream. One we’ve worked out on paper and realized it just can’t happen any time soon, but still my dream. I really think it’s almost more important to be home when you have kids in junior high than any other time. I should know, I teach junior high. It’s a crazy time in a kid’s life.

  • this post is straight from my heart…. i could have written this myself…not as good of course ;o) but this me too!! ♥