The truth is, being a stay at home mom is hard. Every day you work your butt off for the ones you love- from cutting up sandwiches in to little shapes, to wiping butts, and you never get so much as a "Thank you, Mom. You're the best!"
It wasn't always this way. When I had a job (can we even remember way back then?), I was not only acknowledged for my achievements, I was commended and praised. It was a wonderful recognition that I now only hold on to as as memory. Sure, there's Mother's Day, but is one day really enough to appreciate and thank your mother? I think not.
Maybe I'm slightly narcissistic, but I missed that recognition of achieving the goals I had set for myself, and others set for me. I missed adult interaction. I missed using my brain for problem solving of things other than, what do I feed these kids instead of mac and cheese? I honestly missed feeling good about myself. All of these feelings led to a decision that I was absolutely going to go back to work when Todd started his residency. And I felt good about it. REALLY good.
Then, one day in February, I peed on a stick and saw two pink lines. Well, as joyful as I was, it certainly threw a wrench in my plans. (Is that an expression? If it's not, it should be) Now what? Do I try and work for a few months before I have baby, or do I just put the "going back to work" thing off again? After all things considered (cost of daycare, etc), I decided that my baby deserves to have me around just as much as the other two did, and I decided to continue to stay at home.
It was not easy at first to let go of that dream. You see, I am somewhat of a restless spirit- I am constantly looking to set the next goal in my life and achieve it- always achieving, but never satisfied. Perhaps I thought going back to work would fill that need in my life to achieve something else. God had other plans, my friends!
One day, He told me clear as day that I need to be joyful and CONTENT in what I am doing now. That staying at home with my kids is my calling for now, and His will for me. Wow, I had never thought of it that way before! Not that I wasn't happy with my kids before- I love the snot outta them and we've always enjoyed each other's company, but now I honestly can say that I have a new appreciation for being a stay at home mom. So many moms don't even have the option of staying at home, and I am so grateful that I can. It's not always a pretty job, but it's pretty darn beautiful.
So be encouraged, fellow stay at home moms who dream of your old lives longingly - just remember, in a few years, they will be in school and this precious time will be over. We should remember just how blessed we are to be able to nurture them through these first few years.
To my working mom friends- you guys work your butts off and I think you all are amazing! This is just a little pick me up for those of us stay at home mommas who get discouraged sometimes :)