Friday, July 9, 2010

Stay-at-Home Moms vs. Working Moms

This is a debate that I wish would get put to rest. Over four years ago, I decided to become a stay at home mom. I have always been very independent and never could have imagined that I would be in this role, but here I am and I am loving my life.

However, I have been looked down upon and disrespected more than any other time in my life since deciding to be at home with my children. I think most people think that stay at home moms do very little since most working moms do the same tasks and work at the same time. However, I believe that if you do your job correctly, being a stay at home mom is a full time job. Don't get me wrong...I give all the working moms a standing ovation, because it has to be difficult to do it all. I see value in both working and being a stay at home mom....why can't the rest of the world?

No, I don't eat bon- bons all day...get up early, feed the kids breakfast, clean up after breakfast, make beds, get everyone dressed, do the laundry, schedule appointments, do educational activities with the kids, entertain the kids, cook lunch, clean up after lunch, change diapers, clean the house, put kids down for a nap (then you finally get to shower and do everything you can't do when the kids are up), give kids a snack, clean up after snack, vacuum from all of the fun the kids had on the carpet all day, go outside, find something for dinner, prepare dinner, give baths (fight with kids that don't want to go to bed), finally got the kids to bed, iron, fold clothes, give husband his quality time, and now you finally get to get a few hours of sleep to get you through the next day. I don't even have time to eat lunch sometime days...so bon-bons are not on the schedule. Needless to say, staying at home does not mean that you don't work.

I have friends who work and friends who stay at home, but we all are mothers and that's what should be celebrated. We may all have different goals, values, and what we hold most important, but I think that we will all agree that "our children are first on the list". Some women work because they have to and some because they choose to, but working moms should be celebrated because they have 2 jobs (sometimes more)!

I don't plan to be a stay at home mom forever, but for those who do...great! To me being a stay at home mom has allowed me to spend time with my children and be there for all of the precious moments, something that is more valuable to me than any amount of money. It has allowed me to give my husband the freedom to pursue his dreams and visions and work on mine as well. In turn, when the kids are in school, I can pursue my dream of becoming an entrepreneur (I am only 31, anyway). Being a stay at home mom does not mean giving up on your vision or even your life...it's simply a career choice. I may not reap a financial reward, but it is the most fulfilling, challenging, fun, educational, rewarding job that I have ever had.

Whether you are a stay at home mom or a working mom, we are all moms! We all need support, encouragement, advice, and each other to get through the most challenging job there is. We all want what's best for our children, ultimately. Once we can see the value in one another, there will be no room for debates and that's where unity begins!