I recently celebrated a milestone I never anticipated – 1 year of leaving the paid workforce to be a stay at home mom. To review, this “career choice” was never in my plan. Neither was kids. But the kids came, and then I watched them grow and learn from other people, and I realized that I was more passionate about teaching them and being with them than any paid employment I could think of. I actually felt like I was missing out on so many good times and memories, so my wife and I made a plan. And here I am, still standing, one year later. With no gray or white hairs!
Also noteworthy is that I am genuinely HAPPIER than I have ever been in my adult life.
I had always been envious of people who knew what their passion was, because I never did. I know my strengths and my weaknesses, and I was constantly wondering what external contribution to society would also light (and maintain) my internal fire. I have had several different careers in my adult life and earned several different degrees based on my interests at the time. But I was never fulfilled and happy with my day to day until this past year. To be fair, when we planned for me to become a SAHM, I had visions of taking the tykes to explore new areas, and on adventures to zoos, museums, library story times on a weekly basis and not LITERALLY staying at home. But the coronavirus had other plans for our family like so many others, and that forced me to get more creative than I would have otherwise with keeping them engaged. In a moment of self-pride, I can acknowledge that raising them full time, all day every day, is what I was meant to do. Teaching them and sharing life and giggles with them every hour has fulfilled me more than I would have ever thought. Even a hard day as a SAHM (for me) is better than the alternative.
As we slowly transition back to “normal” life, I am again renewed in my “job” with our masked adventures to playgrounds, dance classes, and the Dollar Tree (a breadth of experiences to make them well rounded, of course). And as we picnicked today on a beautiful spring day, it hit me that this is the first “job” I have ever had where I loved it on day 365 as much as I did on day 1. The year has flown by (though there were moments where it felt time stood still) and I am well aware that I have 365 more days to spend all of this invaluable time with them before full time school starts. As far as this type of work, this will always be my hardest and most favorite job. My kids are my passion, and based on the fervor at which they hug/snuggle/love/thank me for our experiences, I dare say they are also happier with me in this job.
Happy Anniversary to me, and my family. And kudos to me in taking the leap and trying something I never thought I’d ever want….it has landed me in a pretty awesome space.
~ Always Peace & Love,
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