This morning I am sitting here gazing out the window at the trees, sipping tea, and now writing the blog post for the day. It is so quiet in the house. I don't have any music playing or dishwasher going, or anything that would interrupt the silence. All I hear is my fingers tapping the keys on the keyboard and my dog snoring at my feet. It is a blissful feeling.
Being a stay at home Mom has so many great qualities, and I love it. But it isn't always easy. Sometimes, when my husband leaves in the car to go to work, and my kids hop on the school bus I can feel a little left out. They are living life "out there" and I'm here at home. Everyone comes home at the end of the day full of stories and things that happened that day, and I talk about my garden, my chickens and something funny the dog did. But having been both a working Mom and a Stay at Home parent, I know which one I would choose hands down.
Being home and taking care of my family is a very rewarding experience. I have had many jobs in life that have drained me of energy, taken me away from my family and exhausted me to the core. I have the utmost respect for any parent out there who works and has a family. There is nothing harder than commuting home after a long day, picking up the kids from daycare, going home exhausted and still having to make a meal, do the laundry, go to ballet, go to soccer, do the homework, and maybe have some time for your husband, before falling in to an exhausted slumber, only to wake up in the middle of the night, with a list a mile long racing through your head of what you need to get done the next day. Did that project get done? Did I sign that permission form for my son? How I am going to fit in that dentist appointment?
I remember one very pivotal moment for me. It was the usual crazy start to the work day. We had rushed out of the house that morning and then had to sit in traffic because there was an accident on the bridge. This of course made us late, so when I arrived at daycare to drop off my daughter, I was rushing. I kept telling my daughter to hurry up, Mommy's late. Why are you being so slow? Now at this daycare they had a little window and your child would stand in it on a little stool before you left and wave and blow kisses to say goodbye. But this day I forgot because I was so rushed. And I know she must have cried. I felt terrible. Later on that same day, I was at work and happened to glance out the window. There I saw walking down the sidewalk in the city, my daughter with her day care class. One teacher in front, the other behind, the line of little ones holding on to the rope that connected them all as they made their way. And my heart broke in to a million pieces all at once. I saw her little face and her little hands clutching the rope and I wanted to be the one holding her hand. I didn't want to forget to wave goodbye in the window. Well as you can imagine I pounded on the window at my work, and sure enough she looked up, saw me, and blew me a kiss. The funny thing is, she was so small, and she still remembers that. She remembers seeing me in the window at work, having no idea that I was falling apart right there.
Now this moment sparked my need for change. It certainly didn't happen right away. In fact it got worse for a couple years. But because I knew we needed to do something different, I put all of my energy in to making that happen. And it did. I really feel with all my heart that if something isn't right or you are unhappy with your situation, you need to do everything in your power to change it. It may not happen right away, and it may seem like it never will, but if you keep focusing and working towards what it is you really want, you will get there.
As for not working anymore? Well sure I miss it. I miss the social aspect of being with my co workers and having my own identity. I miss the rewards that having a job brings, like personal satisfaction and growth, financial gain, and adult conversation. But I have taken some steps in my life to make sure I don't lose all that. I volunteer with seniors and Civil Air Search and Rescue. I've started writing again and I make sure I get out of the house and interact with others and spend time with good friends. But now, when that big yellow bus pulls up to the house, I'm there. Now, when the school calls to say that one of my kids is sick, I can go get them. And now, I'm the one in the window waving goodbye and blowing kisses as they go off to school.
So when they all go off in to the real world, and I'm here at home and I feel that little pang of wanting to go too, I stop and remind myself to appreciate it for everything it is. Because when I feel left out and down, I just go back to that day and I hold that picture in my heart of my little girl gazing up at me in the window and blowing me a kiss.