Confessions of a Stay-At-Home Mom

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The alarm goes off, and I hit snooze a couple times sleepily thinking that I can take a shower later in exchange for a few more minutes of precious shut eye. I get up and wake the kids, make them breakfast, reheat my coffee about 100 times, unload the dishwasher, and sit down for a “quiet time” with my Bible and journal while the kids get ready for the day. I put on my workout clothes (you know, just in case I get a spare minute to do a workout video since I didn’t wake up early enough to get to the gym today). We start our homeschool assignments way later in the morning than I hoped, and by the late afternoon, I’ve broken up an argument about whose Barbie it really is; given them a Scripture about not provoking each other to anger; consoled a crying kid who can’t figure out her math work; swept around the table for the millionth time; did 3 loads of laundry; and cleaned the house after another kid decided to unload an entire container of baby powder ALL.OVER.EVERYWHERE.  Now, it’s almost dinner time; and well, there is absolutely no food to be made, because my planned trip to the grocery store was thwarted by the above activities. I’m exhausted, frustrated, unfulfilled, and wondering why on earth God would want me to do this stay-at-home mom gig.

I know…I’m a little dramatic. I saw being a SAHM as a cross I was required to bear, and that my husband, children, and our home were my ONLY callings. Many moms love staying home with their kids, and other moms wish they could.  I, however, felt discouraged and trapped. You see, when I first became a wife and then a mom, I thought it meant giving up who I was, including my strong personality and leadership qualities to support what I thought Biblical womanhood meant.  After digging in the Word for myself and reading about pretty amazing women in the Bible, I realized my thoughts were not completely true. Just because we are called to be SAHM’s as our primary role, doesn’t mean we can’t do other things that we love and have a passion for. It requires help; it requires having properly placed priorities; it can be done.

I sometimes have those “I’m just a stay at home mom; I’m not enough” days, and then I get glimpses as to why we are doing what we are doing, and for OUR family, it’s what works. For you and your family, it may look different. Run the race that you are called to, whatever that is, and run it well! Run it strong, and don’t compare or get discouraged when you see the runner next to you or in front of you.  Let’s end the Mommy Wars with each other, and start supporting each other, fully knowing that we are all created uniquely. All of our roles are difficult, whether we are at home or at work, and we need each other to lean on. Let’s stop being opponents, and be each other’s greatest cheerleaders!

If you’re a SAHM (or any mom for that matter) who feels discouraged, empty, or hopeless, here are some things that have helped me:

1) Have regular dates with your husband. Now, ladies, you may have to get a sitter. You may even have to do some planning, but with some clear communication with your husband, a night out with your man CAN happen. It may even just be eating a quiet dessert together, couch conversations about dreams and goals, or a movie at home after the kids go to bed. Remember what you were like together before the kids came along. Enjoy spending time with your best friend, confidant, and supporter.

2) Schedule a weekly block of hours to do things for yourself. That may look like going to a coffee shop and reading; having your husband or a sitter take the kids out of the house so you can have some alone time at home; join a club for a hobby you enjoy; take a class at the local college, rec center, or online; or go out and have a guilt-free time with friends. Try to keep these hours solely for you, and not household or child-related chores. Have fun!

3) There is a reason for this season, so embrace your place. (Yes, it’s cheesy; and yes, I totally stole both of those quotes). As a SAHM, you are a leader! You are not only leading your children, but you are called to lead others to know Christ. This could be through conversations and actions at play dates, the park, parent-teacher meetings, school events, or even the grocery store.  You can also lead by using your gifts and talents for the glory of God to further His kingdom and being a blessing to those around you.

One day the kids will be out of the house, and your child-raising days will be over. Now what? Do you still know your husband? Do y’all still remember what brought you together in the first place? Do you still have fun with each other? Do you know what your own interests are? Do you remember what you love doing together? Do you remember what your passions are? In the midst of our primary roles as wife and mom, let’s not push aside the fact that there are things we enjoy doing outside of our home.

When I get stuck in traffic with or without the kids, I sometimes throw myself a little party. I turn the music up loud, sing, do a little chair dance, enjoy life, and revel in the fact that I can slow the busyness of life in the midst of gridlock. As silly as that example is, it has truly helped with my perspective to enjoy the place that God has called me. You are not “just” a stay-at-home mom. You are bravely devoting a huge portion of your life to shape and train the next generation. Just don’t forget to shape and train your own too.

4 responses to “Confessions of a Stay-At-Home Mom”

  1. As week 1 of schooling wraps up, with 4 kiddos, I have told Jesse many times “I am calling Karen”. This post had great timing. Thank you for your reminders and great thoughts!

    Like

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