When people ask me what I “do”, I usually respond by saying that I’m a stay at home mom and the owner of a part-time business. And that’s the truth. But I never, ever volunteer my dirty little secret. I just smile nervously waiting for the inevitable follow up questions.
The conversation usually goes something like this:
Random Person: “You’re a stay at home mom?”
Random Person: “So how old is your child.”
Me: (nervous laughter) “She’s six.”
Random Person: “Six? So she’s in school?”
Random Person: “So what do you do at home all day??”
And with that, the secret is out. That’s right. . . I’m a stay at home mom with a school-aged child.
Many respect stay at home moms with young children, but no one seems to understand why anyone would stay at home when their children are in school. But for my family, it’s been one of the best decisions that we could ever make. Here are a few reasons why:
• My house runs more smoothly. With my daughter at school and my husband at work, it’s easier to organize our home, do the grocery shopping, and prepare meals. There are never lines when I run errands because everyone else is at work. Once my family gets home, I’m able to focus on my child, her homework and helping my husband distress from a long day.
• I’m more relaxed. When I was a full-time executive, I was always wound up. At work my thoughts were on what I needed to do at home. And when I was home, I was thinking about work. Being at home has allowed me to be fully present for my family.
• I’m more involved in my daughter’s education. Although my daughter is in school, I spend almost as much time in the classroom as she does. Being “at home” has allowed me to volunteer as the classroom parent which gives me an opportunity to observe my daughter in her learning environment. And now I’m the one who helps my daughter with her homework, not the babysitter. I have a better understanding of where my child is doing well and where she needs extra attention.
• My love life is better. This was an unexpected perk! Getting everything done during the day and being less stressed has been the best aphrodisiac ever for my Type A personality.
Staying at home can get a bit lonely, but my part-time business helps fill my time and gives me a sense of accomplishment. And when I really need support, I can always turn to organizations like Mocha Moms ( www.mochamoms.com) to connect with other moms who have made the decision to stay home and support their families.
This lifestyle isn’t for everyone. But it works for my family and I’m blessed that it’s an option.
Mommies, would you ever consider staying at home even when your children are in school?
Words By: Yolanda Darville