Thursday, October 24, 2013

The Stay At Home Mom Thing

I like to read blogs when I have some spare time. I have a few favorites that I read religiously and then some others (a lot) that I read from Feedly. Sometimes I find myself thinking about things long after I've read about them.

Here's a few I've read recently that fit that category:

Does a stay at home mom need permission to have HALF AN HOUR to herself to go out to run? 
This just pisses me off. WHY do men think that we need their permission to do something? It's a freaking half an hour. Deal with it man! I guess I was just raised differently than a lot of people. Scott knows if he told me I couldn't do something I'd just tell him to go f himself and go do it anyways. If I have the will I'll find a way.

I really like this blog called Clover Lane. She has six children. She's pretty thrifty and is a stay at home mom. You can just feel the love she has for her children in all her posts. BUT this post about being a stay at home mom, while nice if you can do it, just kind of bugs me. Now I know what we write on our own blogs is our own feelings and I totally get that. But I just don't like the whole idea that there is only one way for things to be done and kind of making moms that can't stay home feel like they aren't being good moms.

Being a mom is hard enough without people telling you that you are doing it all wrong. What if you are a single mom? Obviously you can't stay home with your kids. My mom was a single mom until I was five. I don't feel unloved. I never felt like something was missing. I think she did a great job! She wasn't just working so we could have more stuff, she worked to put a roof over our heads. I did have one scary babysitter. I told my mom later that she spanked me a couple times (once with a wooden spoon) and she said she had no idea and she would have kicked her ass if she had known. She would have too.

When I had Jessica I was going to stay home with her. My mom always wanted me to be a stay at home mom. I stayed home for about 9 months and then went back to work a couple nights a week at a Fabric Store. We had moved to where we live now. Twelve miles from town and I didn't know anyone. I tried to make friends with anyone I came across that was close to my age but nothing ever worked out. I needed some time to be a person outside of just being a mom. I didn't go back to work for money. I went for sanity.

I worked that job and then eventually got a job at an old fashioned office supply store downtown. I would alternate between working part time and full time sometimes. Usually I only lasted full time for a couple weeks and then I'd ask to go back to part time. I worked there until I was pregnant with Melissa and then I quit. By this time Jessica was almost five years old. She alternated time with my mom, Scott's mom and one day a week she went to my Grandma's house. Looking back I think that was probably hard for her because she was in so many places and didn't get a set schedule. BUT she also got to spend a lot of time with her grandparents. My Grandma passed away only about a year later so she got some really valuable time with one of my favorite people.

When Melissa was born I stayed home. Jessica was in school and I had made some friends. OH FRIENDS what a difference friends make. I had a good group of friends and we would get together almost every Friday night (we'd trade off houses) and scrapbook. We'd all bring our kids and a snack and all the kids would play and all of us girls would hang out together. It was truly awesome. The kids had a great time and we had girlfriend time.

I was a stay at home mom for seven years. Trevor was a couple years old when my friend told me about this job where she worked. I've been there for 7 years now (except that time I got laid off for about a year). At first my sister in law watched Trevor but that wasn't working out all that great so I put him in a preschool right down the street from where I worked. They served breakfast, had some play time, some school time, lunch and a nap. He went there for about a year and then when I was getting laid off I gave notice. Then I DIDN'T get laid off and my mom jumped at the chance of watching him. So she watched him and my nephew until they were old enough to go to school.

I'm not going to lie, I LIKE going to work. At work I'm not so and so's mom. I'm ME. I feel like I'm needed and appreciated and that I'm smart. I also like that I make some money myself. I don't have to feel guilty or bad if I want to buy myself something. I like contributing to our household income. And times like now when Scott can't work I can work and help support us.

Yes sometimes it's hard to juggle everything. Sometimes I'm tired. I complain about work and some of the stupid people I work with. But I also enjoy my desk with stuff that's mine, arranged how I put it there. My spreadsheets and my color coordinated highlighting and how when I put stickers on the files they all line up just like I want them to. It's not rocket science but I enjoy it.

I've pretty much only worked the hours the kids are in school (with the exception of when Trevor was in preschool) for years now. I drop them off at the bus and I pick them up at the bus. While sometimes it would be nice to stay home and organize things and clean the grout with a toothbrush on a regular basis I'm ok with a messy house. It doesn't bother me. Just give me a call 15 minute before you come over so I can straighten up a bit k?

I'm pretty sure my kids still feel loved.

Well I guess I had a lot to say about that one. I guess I'll stop there for now!

PS Scott just shaved his beard off. PARTY TIME WOOHOO

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Runbunsoff said...

Your one of my favorites to read. Love your humor and saying it like it is! It sounds like you figured out what makes you and your family happy.

Annsterw said...

I am VERY sure your kids feel loved and I think every parent does the best they can - working to keep your sanity seems like a pretty good solution to me! We can all learn to be more understanding...awesome post!

Margaret (Peggy or Peg too) said...

the mommy wars drag on. I get it because I chose not to have children. How dare I!

Honestly if you want to stay at home do it and don't begrudge anyone else if they make different choices than you. If you want or NEED to go to work - go for you - don't give the stay at home moms shit either.

It reminds me of all groups who think their way is the only way and want to impose their "stuff" on you. don't we tell our children to run their own race? Don't compare yourself to the other kids in your class we tell them? So as adults why don't we listen to that?
I don't need to be hit over the head with your religion, your politics, or your parenting. Just do it, do it well and live your life and allow others to live theirs. No one should be made to feel guilty or badly about themselves for wanting to work, staying home, or having to work.

You're doing fine Julie!!!

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