I am a working girl…not that kind of working girl….a highly respectable, legal one. I have had a job since I was 16 years old. I’ve always liked having my own money to do with it what I pleased. My mother was a single mom who worked hard, but didn’t have any left over to shell out for the things a teenage girl wants (clothes, dates, etc.). So as soon as I was old enough, I got a job, and have had one ever since.
Well now I am married to a slob (sorry honey, but it’s true), and now have 4 very messy kids. I have strict standards about how my family eats, and like to keep them involved in a variety of activities. Each of them has a set of doctor’s appointments that have to be kept up with, as well as birthday parties and play dates. I say all that to say that I now have a new job…MOM IN CHIEF (term borrowed from Michelle Obama). I never knew it, but it takes a CEO to manage a household. And I’ve also come to realize that I am that CEO.
I knew when I was pregnant with Savannah that it would be nearly impossible for me to go back to work as well as handle my responsibilities here at home. So Shaun and I talked and planned on me staying at home with the small kids (Ezekiel-2 and Savannah-newborn) for the next couple of years. At the time of the discussion I was very pregnant and very tired, and the demands of my job were wearing on me. So the idea of not working outside the home sounded like heaven. I looked forward to it.
But now it’s here. I’ve been home since December…that’s about 3 months now…and I think I’m going crazy. Not really…but I do miss my job! Even though I taught 1st grade, I miss being around adults-my co-workers.
I miss waking up early in the morning with a sense of purpose and determination to be the best teacher around.
I miss getting dressed up in a stylish outfit with really high heels.
I actually miss fighting traffic to get to work on time.
I miss walking down the school corridor to my classroom, turning on the lights, and preparing the room for the day.
I miss making copies for the week and planning activities that I knew my kids would be excited about.
I miss the challenge of disciplining other people’s children and instilling in them lessons to guide them through life…
and most of all, I miss my paycheck…
I REALLY miss my job!!
But the reality is that we can’t afford a nanny, and I can’t bring myself to put my little bitty baby in daycare (I know for some it has to be done). And we also can’t afford a personal assistant, so it’s up to me to manage the appointments, school projects, etc.
Here’s the thing though, I don’t like doing it, and I’m not even that good at it. There is always laundry to be done, all of my house is never clean at the same time, I still can’t find the time to be an expert coupon clipper, and most of all, I’m bored! There is nothing exciting about folding and putting away laundry. I’ve tried. Even doing it to music doesn’t help.
I’m only happy when I’m outside of the house: playing with Eze at the Children’s Museum, teaching him the names of the fish at the Aquarium, finger painting at his Gymboree art class, etc.
So I’m wondering if the stay at home thing is just not for me? Or maybe I’m looking at it wrong. I had to learn how to be a teacher, so maybe I have to learn how to be a MOM IN CHIEF as well? Is it possible that I wasn’t born with it? That having kids and a husband didn’t automatically qualify me to know how to do it well? Could there be a learning curve? Here’s a question you could help me answer:
Is being a stay at homer about housework or nurturing kids?