Tuesday, June 10, 2008
Thoughts on Staying at Home
Yet nobody really tells you what it is like to be a stay-at-home mom. Nobody really prepares you for what to expect. The only piece of advice I was given before I took off work for maternity leave was "Jaimie, you really need to start slowing down now. Don't wait until you are off of work. Because when you have that baby, your life is going to come to a screeching halt and that is very hard on some people who are used to being so busy." A counselor told me that, and it was one of the best pieces of advice ever given to me. I did start slowing down right when I heard that, and it definitely helped me in my transition to being at home full time.
But still...nobody really tells you that there will be melancholy days. They will begin to weave in and out of your life in this new season you are in. Nobody tells you that sometimes you will feel really lonely. You will crave adult conversation that is uninterrupted and not rushed. You will long to not feel the stress of being at the store and needing to get home quickly. You will desire the days where you could clean the house and it would stay that way for longer than 1 hour. You will wonder what happened to those goals and dreams that you had - that God put there - that resurface when you have time to think about your life. Nobody tells you that sometimes you will feel really bored, like you have cabin fever, and you just HAVE to get out, but you can't, because it is so much work that it is not even worth it. Nobody told me these things!
Everyone says "You are so lucky! You are so blessed!" Yes, I agree with you. I AM blessed. But don't be fooled. This is not an easy life we are living. People who go to work get rewards for what they are doing - they get a paycheck, a pat on the back, they get some recognition. Moms who stay at home get different rewards, and sometimes they are few and far between. They come in the form of your child actually pooping on the potty after months of practice. They come in the form of a wet, slimy kiss when you are crying because you feel you're going crazy. The rewards are there - they're just harder to see.
So, would I do it differently? No - I wouldn't. Seriously. I have come to terms with the fact that having these days is okay, and it doesn't mean something is wrong with me. Some people just don't get it, and may feel like I need to "fix something." But I am learning that God is there in the loneliness, in the boredom, in the wonderings. He's okay with it. I just have to be careful not to dwell in it.
I have been thinking about these things lately because at one time in my life God put a strong calling on me, strong desires that have never gone away. I don't see them happening right now, because (as you already know) I am fulfilling the greatest calling He has called me to. I know that! But I still wonder about those other callings I was called to! What will happen to those dreams? Will anything ever come to fruition?
Sometimes I find out that I have missed opportunities that would help me reach these goals, "because of my kids." I occasionally get passed over an opportunity because it might involve traveling, or I'd have to find a babysitter, or it is just easier to ask someone who doesn't have to deal with those issues. It makes me sad when that happens. Yet I know this is the season of life God has called me to. I don't regret it at all. I don't want to give the wrong impression. I just wonder what will happen, that's all...
So, these are my thoughts. I love it, I wouldn't trade it, but it is not as easy as some people think it is!