I have started on a new path of motherhood, the path of Working Mama. For the past 4 years, I have had the pleasure of watching, playing, struggling and enjoying my “baby” grow-up. By watching my baby grow, I grew too. I had some concerns about going back to work, but my “little man” needed more than I could give him as a stay at home mom (SAHM). Within a week after starting a full-day Pre-K program at St. Richards Episcopal School, we knew we had made the right decision. He has grown so much and is flourishing under the care of his amazing teachers. We love you, Mrs. Kilfoil and Mr. Birdsong!
4 Year Sabbatical
In my self-imposed 4 year sabbatical, I learned a lot about myself. Motherhood had changed me. It seems to have chilled me out. The small things do not affect me as much (i.e., snot smears on my clothes, a spilled drink on a newly cleaned carpet or when things get broken). I feel that the time with my “little man” taught me a TON of patience. Patience towards him, my husband, and especially myself. I learned to accept that my talents were that of a supporting role. I take great pride in other’s accomplishments, is that not a definition of motherhood?
Before and After
For so long, a job seemed like a way of survival. It was a way to get/have a child, put a roof overhead, and entertain us. Many of my past employments evolved into roles that I was good at, but, I did not genuinely love. My four years away from a traditional workplace allowed me time to mature and look at what was needed for my family. Four years ago, I needed to stay home and love on that baby. Returning to work almost seems to be self-care. It allows me to be challenged in learning new things, while also feeling more independent. It helps that I waited for the perfect opportunity and not the best at the moment.
Interestingly, until I started writing this blog, I never really thought what going back to work would do for me. I knew it was something that would help my family. But going back to work has been freeing. I have some mommy guilt, but when son tells me about his day or shows me his latest project with pride, the guilt is a little less. We all seem to be happier.
Life as a SAHM
I felt like the worst stay at home mom. In the beginning, I was uncomfortable all the time. I did not know what I was doing. I was scouring resources to see if they agreed with how we were raising our son. I questioned everything! “Did we feed him the right formula, did we do tummy time right, were we spending our days the way we should to raise an amazing kid?” Being an introverted mom did not help and made it hard and continuously put me out of my comfort zone. I would seek out other mamas and not feel real comfortable in moms groups. I kept trying to fit myself into an image of Stay at Home Mom and felt like a failure.
Home Life Now
The house now is a bit dirtier. But honestly, I was a horrible housekeeper, it sometimes is not any worse than when I was home. Both my husband and I are a little sad about the abbreviated time we see our little guy in the evening, but we can tell he is happier in his school environment. Our household these past weeks have been a little more chaotic, but I think we are all a bit happier. Forever Grateful
I will be forever grateful we were able to make the past four years work and spend the time enjoying all the little things. It was a true sabbatical for me. Reflection on what was important, enjoying the moment, and discovering who I had become over the years. The time with my little man gave me more gifts then I realized. I was able to figure out what I wanted and also accept myself and my ways. Not everyone has the luxury to stay at home, and some will not agree. For me, being with him the past 4 years was an amazing time of self-discovery for both of us. While he learned to crawl, I learned to crawl next to him and see things from a different perspective.