I recently read an article in my Parents magazine about the war between working mothers and stay at home mothers. I was happy to read that a study found that mothers believe this “war” exists but most hadn’t actually witnessed or fell victim to the “war” themselves. I’m a big believer that mothers need to ban together and support one another, although I sometimes do worry that I’m being judged for staying home. Both working mothers and SAHM have shared struggles, unique struggles, and, most importantly, their own reasons for why they decide to work or stay home. Parents need to support each other and respect their peers’ decisions; it’s hard enough to raise wee ones!
I found myself today thinking about why I stay home with my tiny love. Here are a few:
1. We can afford it. My husband is the breadwinner and I pull in a little extra cash when I can. We’ve had to limit eating out and costly activities since we had a baby and bought a house, but giving up these “luxuries” has been worth it. Some parents simply cannot afford to stay home with their children so I consider myself blessed to be afforded this extra time with my son.
2. So “hidden” illnesses don’t go unnoticed. A week ago I noticed a teeny tiny dot in my son’s diaper (another reason I love using cloth–I don’t think I would’ve noticed the spot in a disposable). I wrote it off thinking he got a piece of tomato in his dipe (I’ve found cheerios and other entertaining things). However, the next day, I noticed another dot and, this time, he hadn’t eaten tomatoes. That evening we took Bug to the doctor and, sure enough, the sweetie had developed a staph infection on his manly bits (poor guy!). If I hadn’t been the only one changing his diaper time-after-time, I think the stain would’ve gone unnoticed (at that point he had no other symptoms) and his staph infection would have gone untreated.
3. I was able to take Bug to Toddler Time at the local library today. It was amazing. The stories and songs are still over his head, but he LOVED seeing all the other children and enjoyed the music. Bug was so happy that he would shriek and smile so big that I didn’t think his mouth could stretch any wider. I thought to myself, “this is why I stay at home,” so I can regularly experience his joy. He was so worn out by all the fun that putting him down for a nap didn’t even involve one shriek of protest.
Sometimes I get super stressed and overwhelmed by the duties (and thought of ) being a SAHM, but ultimately, it’s what works best for my family. My little guy bit me hard with his new front teeth this morning. I started to protest the pain, but he looked at me with his precious smile and I ended up snorgling him instead. Can’t resist that little guy.