Wednesday, August 18, 2010

My Journey Back to Being a Homemaker

Choosing to stay at home is a topic very near and dear to my heart.  After returning to school last semester to finish my college education I realized very clearly how much I missed being here.  I wasn't the only one!  My family struggled as well.  While I was busy studying they tried hard to adapt and did an excellent job.  I worked very hard on my schooling and received high marks which assured me that if I did indeed find myself in future years wanting to return to school I would be successful.  However, I knew that my heart  belonged at home.  So just as I had geared up to be away from home, I am gearing down to return to the peacefulness of taking care of my family.

Cooking, sewing, mending, the list goes on.  It all went out the window while I was gone most days and studying during every other moment.  My family missed all the things that I was able to do for them while I was home.  I was exhausted and we all missed the peace, calm, and routines that kept our house running smoothly.  I felt like a weight was on my chest all summer long anxious over returning once again to school this fall.  I discussed this many nights with my husband who was supportive of whatever choice I wanted to make.  He knew how I felt about finishing my education and having a career that allowed me to be home in the summers with our children. He also knew how important it was to me to nurture and support and take care of our home and family.  I had endured years of peer pressure both intentional and unintentional from friends and family to work outside of our home.  I can remember being asked soon after our oldest daughter was born when I was going to work.  I felt saddened and guilty that maybe I should also be making a wage.  I was raised by a stay at home mom and knew that being at home to take care of my family was important.   I had originally planned on returning to work before our daughters birth but knew as soon as she was born I could not.  I was fully supported in this decision by my husband.  We were willing to make any sacrifice that we needed to, to make sure that I could be at home with our children.   Over the years and after both of our children were in school I continued to get questions about working.  I have worked part time various times through the years but only took part time jobs that allowed for the children to be home with my husband while I was at work.  When they started school I didn't mind working a few days while they were in school.  I thought it would be fun and a great way to earn extra earnings.  However, I gradually started needing someone to watch them more and more as my hours increased when he was not home.  I did not like this and stopped working so that I could be here with them.  No amount of extra earnings was worth having a babysitter stay with my children when I could and wanted to be home with them instead.

 I thought I had a solution for being home and helping earn a wage.  My passion was education and being a teacher would be a career I would love.  It would also allow me to spend my summers and vacation with the children.  I would also feel better about not earning a wage, and I would be helping provide for our family and the expenses.  However soon after I starting school I realized no matter how much I thought I had prepared for being so occupied with school, I didn't realize to what extent it would effect all of our lives.  I began to feel worse than ever knowing that I was preparing to have a career that would take me away from being at home until I retired.  Even if I was home during the summers.  That is when I sought the guidance of my husband.  He knows me better than anyone and listened to my concerns.  He was comforting,  yet still wanted to let me make a decision on my own.  He wanted to make sure I decided what was best for me so that I was happy with my decision. He was supportive either way.   He did however ease my guilt.   No matter what I decided I was not to worry about feeling guilty from others.   I was finally able to let go of the guilt  that I have been feeling all these years! This is where I feel I belong and made the decision to return home.  I have peace in that decision and am blessed to have such a wonderful and supportive spouse.  I am excited to be able to fully turn my attention once again to all things home.

I have left it all behind and look forward with anticipation to the years ahead of me.  All the weight I felt on my chest is gone!  There is a lot to catch up on around here but with time I will catch up, and get back into my routines and the enjoyment I get from working around my home.  I'm not in a hurry, I'm not going anywhere and I can avoid the stress of rushing around now.  I find great satisfaction from baking breads, cleaning my home, hanging the laundry to dry on the line, sewing goods for our home, and cleaning the floors.  I do all of these things out of love for my family and keep my home tidy with joy. Even though I was only gone a semester, it was a window for me into a world that I have no desire to be part of.  I also realize that some may have a choice but have the same feelings of guilt to earn a wage as I did. I want to encourage anyone that would like to be at home and you are able to, to return home and be strong against the guilt you might be feeling.  There is so much  joy and satisfaction from being at home.  Do not let those that make remarks from their own dissatisfaction and unhappiness in their own lives determine how you live your own.

I am so very grateful that I did not continue toward a career and spend the next years until retirement at work when I have the choice to be at home.  I know this is where I am supposed to be and have the blessing of a spouse that is fully supportive of my choice to nurture and support my family at home.  These are very special days while the children are still young, and I am so thankful that I will not  be spending them in frustration and eager for time to myself so I  can study.  Instead I look forward to them returning home from school, listening patiently about their day, and devoting time to them and I have no where else to be than here, being a mom and wife and totally loving it!

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