The value of a stay-at-home mom is not measured in dollars and cents. It is greater than this. Your value is measured in time and love.
Being at home with your kids seems like an endless and boring job. Many would have you believe you are just a glorified babysitter. It seems like what you do doesn’t matter, but it does. Stay-at-home mothers matter a lot.
What you do with your kids in these hours, days, and years is shaping them for the road ahead. You are shaping the way they will view life. Sometimes you are just giving them security and love when they are the neediest.
You are teaching them things they may not get anywhere else but through you. I just want you to know you are not alone. There are millions of other stay-at-home moms just like you. Because you are all alone with you and your child/children it feels very isolating.
It feels like you are the only one who had to clean up a runny (snotty, let’s be real) nose this morning, a poopy (runny, yep) diaper, and Cheerios all over the floor. I do remember this stage. The days were really LONGGGGGG.
I could not go to the bathroom without someone walking in on me. Or they would be on the other side of the door-banging to get in. I am not sure what my kids were going to find once they got into the bathroom. Nothing pleasant, that’s for sure.
Showers were really quick. An undisturbed bath was pure luxury. And getting out of the house alone-priceless.
(That should be the tag-line for the next MasterCard commercial. Every mother would be screaming “YES” on the other side of the TV). If you were like me, I craved for socialization and an intelligent conversation with anyone over 20 years old who did not use the word “mommy.”
Here are 3 Things to Remember About Your Role
1. Staying At Home Is Not Demeaning
Staying home with your children is not demeaning; it is a privilege many cannot afford. I have had several friends say they wish they had enough money to stay at home because they hated working. I felt really blessed we could afford for me to stay at home.
Most days I knew it was important. At parties, when I would hear people talking about their job, I would be a bit envious. Someone would ask what I did, and “stay-home-mom” was always just a bit mumbled.
There would be an awkward, “Oh.” Followed by silence. The conversation would quickly move on to someone else. That was painful. I wanted to yell, “I am smart.”
I guess that would just make me look like a “crazy, stay-at-home mom” so I kept quiet. Don’t let anyone ever tell you that your role is not important. You are ensuring those formative years are the best possible years for your children. What you do has great value.
2. A Stay-at-Home Mom Is Important
Your role as a stay-home-mom is important. If you go back and look at child development, you will see many things are happening those first years of life. Babies know when change happens, they understand loud noises, and they feel all sorts of emotions. They are not mindless blobs cooing and gurgling.
Real connections are happening in their brains. They know more than you think. They know when they are not loved and can feel tension through the mother.
Science Daily lists all sorts of things that happen when children do not have a loving and stable environment in formative years. What happens to a child has lasting emotional effects. There is more of a chance for depression, health issues, and behavior issues when children do not have the stability of a loving home. (I do realize a daycare can be stable and loving alternative.)
When things go awry with an adult, psychologists always begin with childhood to get a complete diagnosis. These early years are highly impressionable, and we need to realize how important they are. And how important you, as a mother, are to your children.
3. Staying Home is Not For Everyone
Not everyone has the privilege or sanity to stay home with their kids, but if you do-embrace it. I knew I wanted to stay home when I had kids. I am so thankful I did. Looking back at those years, I relish the times I had with them.
I have so many great memories. It was wonderful. (80% of the time it was wonderful. The other 20% of the time I was escaping to the mall). I bonded with my kids in a way no one else could. I wasn’t always a perfect mom. Some days I was tired and irritable. But I was committed. I knew I could teach them things no one else would have time to teach or perceived to be important.
There would be time to mold them with scripture and teach Biblical values. Proverbs 22:6. “Train up a child in the way he should go, and when he is old he will not depart from it.” I would not trade those times for any dollar amount. I would do it again. You learn how to adapt financially.
I hope you will consider staying home with your kids. It is a wonderful feeling knowing you are making a real difference in their lives.
For those of you who have chosen another source of childcare other than yourself, I am glad that you have come to that decision on what is best for your family. My comments are simply to encourage the stay-home-mom because it is not a glamorous job. Often, it means putting a career on hold and adjusting to the feeling of isolation and lots of bodily fluids. It can be shocking.
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