I Am a Working Mom

Three years ago this past March, I pushed my little four month old baby boy onto the school campus I taught fourth grade at, sat down in my Principal’s office and signed my letter of resignation.
I was no longer employed by a school district. Almost six years of working with a classroom of kids, laughing, crying, singing, writing {by far my favorite part of school}…
One of my fourth grade classes on crazy hair day.
Gone.
I joined the “Stay-at-home Mom” ranks.
And I was terrifed. I was terrified for a couple reasons, but mainly, it was a step of faith. We were DRASTICALLY cutting our monthly budget. Money would be very, very tight for us. But more than that, I was scared because I wondered…
Can I do this?
You see, my mom was also a teacher. She taught Kinder. But when she had me, she also joined the SAHM ranks. And as a kid I can’t tell you how much I LOVED having her at home. She was there ALL THE TIME {well, ok, there or at Nordy’s, but at least I knew where she was :)}.  When I was sick, she would pick me up from school, when I forgot my lunch, she brought it, when I wanted to know if a friend could come over and play, I had my answer.
The school payphone and I were good friends. I always knew my mom would answer.
Anyway, I wanted that for my kids. But I have to be honest, it was hard for me. Not that I didn’t love being home. It was wonderful at first. I slept when the baby slept. I went where I wanted to go. I ate whenever I wanted. I didn’t have to ever leave him.
But I got kinda lonely.
I live in California, and if you want to have a nice life here {probably like most places in the US} most families will require two incomes. So thlife at meant that hardly any of my friends stayed home with their kids. I had one or two, but we were usually so broke we never could go anywhere, ha!
So at the time, my husband owned a fence company, and it was decided that I would answer the phones, type all the contracts, order the material, get the jobs rolling, etc. And that worked. For a while. But then Jake got older and more unmanagable and it got harder and harder to answer the phones with a screaming baby in the background. And then Evelyn came along. And wow. That made life with the business MISERABLE. I seriously had no time to do ANYTHING for it.
At the end of 2009, our business partner decided to move to Texas. He and his wife had a baby and wanted to be closer to her family. And somehow, in just a couple months, God shut down the fence company. But then the hoodies came along….
…and well,  I am still working. πŸ™‚ It was such a seamless move. Definitely a God thing.
And I love it. I love being able to have extra income. I love feeling like I am putting all my college education to use, even if it is in a completely different field. I love feeling PRODUCTIVE.
But there are few things I HATE:
1. My house is a mess ALL THE TIME.  I think any stay at home mom would tell you that you are cleaning constantly. But then add a business in and your living room looks like this:
This is my work space in action. Actually, this is the end of the workday, and I am getting ready to clean everything up.  Evy thinks she is a big help… πŸ™‚

2. I hate that I never have to leave the house to work. I stay home all the time. I have more PJ’s than I do normal clothes. HA. And I used to have a “work” wardrobe. Well, that hasn’t seen the light of day in a LONNGGGG time. Positive: think of all the money I’ve saved! πŸ™‚
I WILL NOT show you what I look like during the day…SORRY! Only the Mail -lady gets to see me like that- when she comes for my scheduled pick ups!
3. I hate that I don’t get to socialize as much as I like. Most people get to go to work and leave their kids and get things done. I wake up, get breakfast, work for 10 mins before someone starts crying, take a 30 minute break helping everyone, work another 10 mins, someone is hungry, get food, work again…well you get the point.
The other day as I was frantically driving off to Joanns before they closed so I could get some necessities for my evening of sewing, I drove past all the neighborhood moms sitting in lawn chairs on the street corner, sipping iced tea and watching their kids play. They waved, I waved…and I started feeling a little sad. I know most of those moms have jobs, but they got to leave their work at the “office”. I was savoring the few short minutes I might have before everyone lost it at home and I needed to be back.
Definitely #1 bummer of being a SAHM/Work at home Mom is the lack of social outlets.
THANK YOU BLOGGING WORLD FOR THAT!!
BUT…..
I LOVE that we have some financial freedom. I LOVE that I work for myself. I LOVE that I am here for my kids whenever they need me. And I LOVE that I get to see this:
PLEASE ignore the LARGE pile of laundry that is waiting to be folded. Laundry is the first thing I try to do in the mornings. Jenni R…recognize the tee?!? πŸ™‚
So what’s my point of this very long, very random, very boring post?
My point is this:
I get asked a lot by moms contemplating staying home… what should they do? And I think I have to say, the answer is entirely up to you. I have many friends who work and LOVE it. But I have some friends who stay home and wouldn’t have it any other way.
I think I fall somewhere in the middle. I love the flexibility of staying home and raising my own kids, but I hate the isolation, the lack of money, the lack of challenge that I felt staying home brings. So I have tailored it to fit my needs. Sure, I don’t get to hang out on the street corner with the other moms, but my kids have ME all day long. And that is the most important thing to me.
So if you are trying to decide what to do with your job…pray about it, follow God’s direction and leading, and bloom where you are planted. Sometimes its not always the most comfortable place, but its the BEST for YOU.
xoxo
PS…Potty training post coming tomorrow. I’m super excited to tell you about the potty training. Is that weird or WHAT?!? HA!
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5 thoughts on “I Am a Working Mom

  1. Your kiddos are so cute Amy!! Like you I love being a SAHM, but cannot stand the isolation of this decision sometimes…but I am happy to say that today I am getting together with another mom for a play date & I am beyond excited about it. So excited you have found your happy medium Amy. We are so glad you did…being our closets are all Evy's Tree!! hehe I opened my little Etsy vintage jewelry shop for the same reason- to have a little extra income and share some of my vintage findings along the way. So far it is not really taking off, but in my mind I am doing something I love and I am proud of that anyways, even if the jewels do not sell. HA!Hope you have a wonderful holiday weekend!!xoxo

  2. Great Post- I have done both since the girls were little. You are at the hardest part right now- but the neatest part. They change daily. But when they are both in school- you have have you lunches etc. Thanks for being a great balanced MOM. You go superwoman!

  3. This is a decision that I beat myself up over on the daily. I dream of being a SAHM, my hubby on the other hand, does not. Until we can agree, I keep working and I am trying to embrace being a teacher, and I really do love it on most days. I am so happy that you have found your happy medium and that your hoodie business has taken off! I am so happy to have "met" you before you were famous (heehee!) and I have loved watching you grow! You keep it real and honest! What I love most about you!Your little kiddos – aren't they so cute cuddling on the chair! One of those moments huh? And little Evy looks so cute in her shirt! LOVE that you get such good use out of Lola's clothes! I am sure it won't be long before another box finds its way to your doorstep! Lola is such a little peanut, getting taller and skinner by the second I swear (or at least it just gives me another excuse to go shopping for her, I have a disease). Have a wonderful weekend!

  4. Oh Amy, this is such a sweet post…funny how we are the same age, and at the same levels, but on different levels at the same time…lol…trust me, if anyone saw me during the day, WOWSER! HAHAHA…you are doing an amazing job, I too felt like you way back in the day when the older boys were little. I was young, new mom, no car, no money, and just stayed home…taking care of of the 2 boys & running a 'daycare' for our close family and friends…but it is only a season, and pretty soon little Jake will start school, and you will see life evolve yet again….its amazing how 'busy' and 'social' you end up being once your involved with school…HA! you'll wish for the days when life was quieter and could just stay put at home for long periods….lol, I know I do!but yes, I've been blessed to have been a SAHM now WAHM for the past 15yrs, and I wouldn't trade it for the world…my husband has always tried to provide for all we need, and yes we struggle, but its ok, money is not as important as raising our children, sure it is nice, but if it means missing out on those 'moments', than that's ok…lol, keep up the good work! your children will remember those moments…haha, and I had to laugh at the memories of your mom, and I sure hope my kids remember those 911 phone calls, forgetting this paper, or their lunch, or I'm sick, and have the comfort of knowing I'm just 'a phone call' away….lolanyways, long comment, but it was good reading what you wrote….this will only last but a season…xoxo, Steph

  5. I always love reading your posts, Amy! You write so beautifully and I feel like I am reading my life! Haha! There are days when I wonder if there is anything more difficult than being a SAHM and running a business from home – you literally NEVER have a break of any kind. You never can just sit on the couch and watch a TV show or read or have even two seconds to yourself to unwind at the end of the day, but seeing those moments with your kids (like Evy sitting in Jake's lap) make it all worth it!

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