As I enter into my 4th complete year of being a stay home mother, I am realizing that this could be a really lonely career choice. I decided to stay home with my children before I had children! Being a stay home mother, was something I knew I would do. In 2005 I decided to quit my job and finally make that dream reality. Over the last few years, I have met other stay home mothers, but none of them are quite like me. I often talk to friends of mine who work outside the home, and they thrive off having their co workers to talk to and hang out with. As a stay at home mother, you really do not have any co workers to hang out with and talk to. I say that I haven’t found any SHM quite like myself because I am only 29, I have 4 children, I homeschool, I have a college degree, and I am black. Don’t get me wrong their are plenty of black stay at home mothers, but most of them are much older than I am and therefore cannot really relate to my situation as being a young stay at home mother. I tried joining SHM groups and found that they were a little to “clickish” for my taste. I didn’t really like all the drama or gossip. I simply wanted a place for my children to play with other children and for me to have grown up conversation. I also find that with homeschooling people expect me to be conservative in my beliefs and I am opposite of that. I consider myself independent in my beliefs, but lean more toward the liberal side, this makes me somewhat of a black sheep in the homeschooling circle. Because I am young, people assume I am SHM because I have no choice and didn’t get a college education. I often get gasp when I say I did attend college and decided to stay home. Who in their right mind goes to college just to become a stay home mother?
I have come to realize that it could be because of the “taboo” around being stay home mother that makes it so difficult for mothers to make the decision to stay home with their children. I try my best not to make my children my world and have a life outside of them, because I understand the ultimate goal is for them to grow up and move on in their own lives. So how does one prevent being lonely in this career? First I realize this is not a job, but a lifestyle a calling. I was an only child growing up until the age of 18 so I have an understanding of what’s it’s like to be by myself, and I welcome that. I make sure that I find sometime for myself rather it is going to the bookstore and having a cup of coffee or walking around a store for a couple of hours. I want to know how to live my life without my children. I welcome friends of the past in my life and I try to go out to dinner with them as often as I can. Most importantly I try to maintain the relationship with the only co worker I have my husband. I don’t want it to be when our children leave we have no idea who either of us are. So we often go out to dinner with each other. I share stories of my day with him that didn’t include the children. I try to have one thing to tell him about that is totally about me and not a guess what the kids did story! One day I won’t have a guess what the kids did story.
With this is mind, staying home with my children is the least boring or repetitive “career” I could have chosen. Every day brings something new and exciting. I understand that I will not have them around for long so being alone in my choice of being a SHM is one small sacrifice for one big reward! No career choice is perfect their will always be flaws and drawbacks, but at the end of the day I feel satisfied and rewarded for my days work with my children. They are not clickish, they don’t gossip, there is no office drama, they don’t complain about the job I am doing, they simply love me for being their mother! I don’t have to over achieve or complete some huge project to get acknowledged all I have to do is walk through the door or greet them in the morning. It is moments like that, that I realize I am far from being lonely. My house is full of so much love and laughter that I am love drunk! How can one be lonely with 4 wonderful children that always have something exciting to share or show you. I may not have those co workers to gossip with about all the drama that happen at worked, but I have children to laugh with, hug, tickle, play with, and most of all love me unconditionally!