Whenever someone asks me who my role model is, without hesitation, I would say its my mom. In the truest sense of the word, she is selfless and loves us all unconditionally. Even at 29 with a husband and two kids, I still cannot imagine life without her. She is a successful career woman who can immediately switch off her lady-boss mode and transform into her loving-mom mode.
Everyday, she comes how from work, puts down her bag, changes into her comfy home clothes, makes everyone cups of tea, catches up on everyone’s day and then preps dinner. Everything is done for the family, without any real rest time for herself. To me, she embodies the definition of ‘mother’. She is who I strive to be for my children.
It is now my third year as a parent. Whenever I compare myself to her, I don’t see myself anywhere close to where I am trying to be. Most times, its is so easy for me to blame my busy work life. But really, it is no excuse, Mom is also busy working by she still has time for us.
Other times, I would point to the fact that I am still a new parent. But really, how can three years still be considered ‘new’?. I almost always also blame the fact that I do not have home help, but I know many other families out there do not have this luxury and can still be fabulous mothers.
So I always wonder what it would be like to be a stay-at-home-mom (SAHM). Would all that extra time finally let me be the super-mom I dream to be? Would I have the ability to do all I wish to do? ..OR.. Would I still be coming up with excuses on why I am not yet super-mom? I truly fear being the latter, having excuse after excuse. I hope this is not the reality of things.
I have always wanted to prove myself wrong, so being a SAHM is a career goal for me. Mothering full-time, managing the house the way I want it to be, having time for the kids whenever they needed me, and nothing else from the outside world to distract me from what’s important. Life would just be bliss (theoretically).
I have shared this with some friends and I have seen how some think I’m a bit mad. Interpreting my goal as having ‘no goal’, saying that its silly and lazy. There are also some who say that it’s a step backwards, arguing that women have worked so hard to get themselves out of the house and make a place for themselves in the workforce, and instead of supporting this movement, I am just going to back down and stay at home.
Well sorry, but I say “bull crap!”.
Sure the feminist movement has been great at giving us freedom and access to more things, like voting and equal pay. And to me, this includes giving us the freedom to do whatever we want including staying home with our kids.
I think many tend to forget how much of a commitment and a ‘full-time job’ it is being a SAHM. And without a doubt, I believe that it will still be a madhouse in my brain and I know I would be picking up every piece of clothing off the floor while silently cussing and cursing under my breath. I can see it slowly sucking the life out of me because all I ever do it housework. I can see the chaos of actually giving a sh!t as a SAHM versus my current i-don’t-give-a-damn-i’m-too-tired-to-deal-with-it attitude.
But whatever it is, all moms will do whatever they feel is best for their kids, whether it is staying home or working full time or working from home. Nobody has a right to judge or say what is best for a mother and her family. I believe all mothers strive to be the best.
And so, to help me achieve this goal, I have done quite a bit of research about being a SAHM. I thought Katie from HappilyEverMom did a good compilation of Amazing Resources for SAHMs. After reading things here and there, it has given me good insight on how to survive and make this idea more and more doable.
Some tips which I would like to keep in mind are:
- Prepare financially – The Latina Homemaker and HouseMix have very good advice on this. Start saving now, cut as much debt out as you can, analyse all the current spending and figure out how to reduce them, and practice living on one income before actually taking the plunge.
- Create a SAHM routine. I found great advice and helpful printables from Growing Slower and Charming Imperfections which are actually quite useful for all moms in general!
- But! keep the routine simple and don’t take on too much chores. Limit yourself to two major errands per day.
- Take off those yoga pants! Yes, dress up everyday so you won’t feel bleurgh!
- And most importantly, remember to take some time for yourself.
Nothing in this world comes easy, but if we are willing to put in the effort, it will all be worthwhile in the end. I am already taking my own little baby steps and preparing financially. Let’s hope that this dream of mine will come true. Fingers crossed!