Wednesday, September 10, 2008

Be Happy With What You Have

On The Flipside Guest Blogger: Courtney of Quiet Chaos.

Courtney has written a great post and so graciously agreed to be a Guest Blogger for On The Flipside. Please read her post below and then leave your opinion on this topic in the comments. And, don't forget to go over and visit Courtney and her beautiful family at Quiet Chaos. Thanks so much, Courtney!


Be Happy With What You Have

Why is it that most mothers are not happy with their positions?

Most stay at home moms envy the working moms because they get adult interaction; most working moms would give their right arm to stay home with their kids.

I have been thinking about this lately. I am one working mom that would give her right arm to stay home with her kids, but I also understand the stay at home moms point of view. When I did stay home with Taylor, there were days I wished I did work. For the most part, I was happy being home and being her mom, but there were those days.

I guess the grass is not always greener on the other side. When I did it, I wanted what I have now. Now that I have it I want to go back. I guess I never thought about having to keep up with dishes (no dishwasher), laundry, house cleaning and still have time to spend with my kids. I thought (I was dreaming I know) that I could go to work, pick up my kids after and play with them all night. I guess I thought dinner would make itself, laundry would all ready be done by the laundry fairy, and those dishes? They would magically get done while I was sleeping or we would use paper plates, cutlery, cups and napkins. That doesn't even include the bathing of children and having two little girls that need their hair done.

I fortunately have an amazing husband who does not hesitate to jump in and do his fair share. He used to do all the dishes and fold the laundry, as well as, helping me clean on the weekends. I would do all the laundry, cooking and bathing. Now that he is in school I fold the laundry now and do the dishes when he doesn't get a chance to. He does a lot on the weekends for me, but it is still tiring for both of us. I know I am extremely lucky because none of my friends husbands really help them out whether they work or not. Some do a little bit, but I constantly hear, "Can I just trade you husbands only for a couple days?"

I have a little plaque that hangs above the entry way leading from the living room to the dining room that says it best, "Be Happy With What You Have." I am going to make a conscience effort to make this my personal motto and not complain about how I want so desperately to stay home. I am going to be grateful that I have a job. I may not always like it, but it pays well and many people do not have jobs. I have a boss that is flexible when he wants to be so I am going to remember those times not the times that he isn't. I have a wonderful, (sorta) healthy family who loves me unconditionally and a great support system. I challenge you all to leave in the comments the wonderful things about your life.

Originally posted by Courtney at 6/20/08 at 9:04 AM

So, what about you - Are you a stay-at-home-mom that often wishes you could return to work? Or, are you a working mom that often wishes you could stay home? Or, are lucky to be doing just what you want - right where you want to be?

Please offer your opinion on this topic and make sure you follow the comment rules and be nice to Courtney and to me and to all others that comment. And, please go over to my sidebar and participate in the poll question on this subject.

Poll results: If You Could Change Your Life Would You ... 16 people participated in poll. 2 (12%) said they would quit working to stay home with their kids. 0 said they would go back to work full-time. 3 (18%) said they would go back to work at least part-time. 11 (68%) said they loved their life just as it was.


Shannon said...

I have been so lucky to be a stay at home mom. I would not change it for the world. My family and daily duties keep have kept me busy for the last 10 years.
I do however work 2 hours a week teaching a cycling class at the YMCA. I fully understand that this is not a real job, but I do enjoy it and would do it regardless of pay. It does not give me any breaks from my regular family duties.
I admire woman who can do both. It's just not for me. My purpose in life is to be a mom and a wife and do this with 1oo% of my ability. I take being a mother and a wife very seriously and it's work, but very rewarding work!
I'm lucky in my eyes!

Brenda said...

I haven't worked full time since late in 2000 and it feels darned good. I had to work when my kids were small and wished every day that I didn't have to. Now I can be here for my grandson and I feel that's a good thing.

Pregnantly Plump said...

I must admit that I love being a stay-at-home mom. I do wish that I could bring in more money (I'm able to bring in small amounts with my clothes.)
As for interaction, I do wish my son and I both had more of that. I'm trying very hard to find a nice group of moms in my area. As much for my son as for me.

The Engert Family said...

I can honestly say when I was a SAHM, I never wanted to be a working mom or envied them at all! Even though both situations have their challenges, I loved being a SAHM and would do it again in a heartbeat if circumstances were different.

Andrea said...

I have the best of both worlds...I am at home 3-4 days of the week, and I work the other 1-2. This has been the perfect balance for me, as I get my adult interaction (and I get to use my brain in different ways than at home) -- but yet I am still there almost every day for my kids, and to keep up with the house.

I am blessed to have found this opportunity and to have a place of employment who is so willing to keep me on board, that I basically get to pick and choose my hours.

If I had to work full time -- well, I just don't know how some moms do that (and I admire them compeltely). And...if I stayed home full-time -- well, for my sanity, I just don't know if that would work out for me.

tammy said...

After working for 10 years, I have happily been a SAHM for the past 5 years now, and wouldn't change it for anything. I love doing the cooking, cleaning, decorating, shopping, volunteering, and even mowing the lawns while my hubby works. My kids are my greatest blessings and time flies by way too quickly.

Kami said...

I completely agree, you have to own your decisions, and in that you will be happy with what you have.

I choose to work at home and do so very part time so that I am "home" with my kids not just working at home. It's a decision I have made because it's the one that I am happiest with and so are my kids.

But I know many women who wouldn't be happy doing what I am doing, nor should they have to be. It's such a personal thing but working just isn't right for me.

Little Sweethearts said...

I think this is a great topic and one that's on a lot of our minds.

I work 3 days out of 5 and find it works well. My kids are both in school so they don't really need a SAHM every day (I'm home on Wednesdays which is great 'cuz there's only 1/2 day of school, and I'm off on Tuesdays as well). In the back of my mind I would love to be a WAHM, but receiving a paycheck at the end of each month and getting paid for holidays is of course a nice feature of being an employee.

My husband is great: he's an awesome cook, he helps out and he's the best dad. On top of that he loves me to death, so how's that for a bonus? :)

I still wish I had more time for the things I would like to do and when the kids are sick I wish I was a SAHM, but all things considered, I'm very happy with what I have.

The rest I'll just put on my Christmas list ;)


Anonymous said...

Ever since I was a little girl, I wanted to be a SAHM. I only knew what that might be from observing a few of my friends' mothers. My own mother had (still has, at age 69!) a fulfilling career. While there were times I wished she could stay home with us, I know now that it was best for all that she did what made her happiest. For me, that is staying home with my kids, and I am blessed to have married a man who totally supports me in that.
It has taken my own parents a long time to be reconciled with my not working at least part-time. I think this is because they put a high value on their own careers. Perhaps they --particularly my mother-- worried that I thought badly of them for not being at home more with us?
I do respect them for their dedication. It just isn't my cup of tea.
I am in awe of women who can both work a full-time paid job AND be a hands-on mother. There are many out there!
I also think that single moms should be awarded medals.
Just my own humble opinion here.

AZMom said...

I've done both..full time stay at home when my kids were little and full time work now that they are in school. There are days I'd love to be able to stay home and be there after school and there are days I am glad I work. I know what both sides of the fence look like and I guess I wish I could do a little bit of both :-)

Courtney said...

These are all really fantastic outlooks and opinions! I too always dreamed of being a SAHM mostly because I wanted to be just like my mom when I grew up, but I do like my career (most of the time) and since I wrote this post it has really helped to hold me accountable.

I try to appreciate daily the time I do have to spend with my children and I also appreciate the money that I bring in. My girls are introduced to so many things that they wouldn't be if I didn't work because of how tight money would be so I try to focus on that.

I know money is not everything, but if it's what helps me get through my days, then that's how I'll look at things.

Adrian said...

I am the only mother on my block who works and I get a little jealous sometimes, but on the whole I like it.

I like having a paycheck of my own and some structure to my day. And I think it has made my kids a lot more self-reliant. I just wish there were more opportunities at my level to go with a less than 40 hour work week. It's completely unheard of in the traditional business world.

I've worked full time since I was 16 except for a couple of short maternity leaves. I'd like to try staying home sometimes, but I think I'd be totally baffled if I had a whole week sitting in front of me. I'd probably end up 40 pounds heavier and with 3 more blogs!

common mom said...

I've been a part-timer since my son was born 8 years ago. I am lucky lucky lucky to be exactly where I want to be! I have two beautiful children that now both go to school full days. I have a wonderful husband who does more than his fair share when he's home (he's a pilot, so he's gone 16days of each month). I have a wonderful job that I love! I love what I do, I love where I work, and I love my coworkers. I found that part time (30 hours a week) is best for me . . . I get to see the kids onto the bus, go to work and do my thing and get adult interaction, and be home when they get home. Since we're home by 4:00 p.m., I've got plenty of time to play with them before having to make dinner and do some chores. I have a flexible work schedule, so I never have to miss any of the kids' "stuff" that's going on.

It works out great for me and my family. I truly am very lucky!

Jaina said...

I don't have kids yet (I'm not even married), but when I *do* settle down and start having kids, I hope to be able to stay at home with them.
In the meantime, I love my life. I have a job that I love and look forward to going to each day. I have a wonderful boyfriend who loves me more than I can even imagine. I have the bestest friends a girl could ask for who have been there for everything and stood by me. I have an AMAZING, loving and supportive family that I am more and more thankful for with each passing day.

Rosemary Bogdan said...

I'm a stay-at-home mom and I love it. Never wished I could work. There's nothing I would rather do.

Anonymous said...

I started out in the workforce. I liked working and helping others. Then I beccame a Mom and cried leaving my babes in the care of others. I worked for the first 11 years of my daughter's life and 8 of my son's. Part of that time I was a single Mom.

When I remarried I was able to stay home full time so my daughter's have always had me around.

We homeschool now as well, and I would not trade my life. I have tried going back into the workforce part time but it was not good for the family and I found I really did not want to be there. I am completely fulfilled being a full time homemaker, educator and Mom. It has not always been easy, but it has been the right thing for me.