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Monday, April 12, 2010

Meh, enough self indulgent ranting already

Thank you all for your thoughtful responses.  To my close friends and family, sorry to bore you with a topic you never seem to hear the end of from me.  I know it's tiresome.  Thanks for putting up with me and my over-intellectualizing.

I have been a mom for almost eight years and have been a working mom for six of those.  Coming home is still a bit of a culture shock, even after all these months. Part of my problem is that I want to live my life intentionally (ugh that sounds so cheesy).  I didn't quit my job to stay home.  I was laid off.  And I'm still sort of looking for work.  I still network.  I just don't want to be swept along by the current and not have made conscious decisions.

Also, though my modern husband is happy for me to do whatever I want to do (work or stay home or???) I still struggle with now saddling him with the responsibility of taking care of us financially when that isn't what he signed up for.  I always wanted to work. Now I have a niggling feeling that I'm leaving him holding the bag.  (He doesn't feel this way incidentally.  I am projecting.)

Believe me, I don't want to go back to the long days, the ringing Blackberry, the long commute and the guilt.  But it is clear to me that I will have to have more in my life than soccer and packing lunches.  I know enough to know that that doesn't make me a bad mother.

I used to judge the stay-at-homes.  What the hell do they do all day??? I thought.  I hope I'm in a place now where I don't judge anyone else's choices anymore.  I hope I've grown.

But I get bored.  I get lonely.  My four year old talks to me all.day.  But it's not the same.  I sometimes miss having somewhere to go every day where I am expected and where I will be tasked with something.  I know, I know.  Many of you are reading this and thinking that I have those things at home.  BUT it.is.not.the.same.  Anyone who tells you different is lying or doesn't know any better.

As an introvert, the kind of social life that goes along with having somewhere to be every day was a good fit for me.  I generally don't seek people out socially very much and I'm not fantastic at making new friends, so I have to figure out how not to get lonely.

It's easy to say follow your heart but when your heart only mumbles incomprehensibly then that becomes a whole lot more challenging.

When Big Red goes to school all day every day like his brother and not just for these snippets of preschool, then I will probably start a new chapter.  Until then, I'm *trying* to take each day as it comes and let it be what it will be.  And I do treasure the time with my children.  Each and every day.  And I like taking care of my home and my family and having time for my creative interests.

If you struggle with the same internal conflicts that I do, then I hope this place helps you to feel like you aren't the only one.  These posts are what this blog was supposed to be all about. I am, after all, Suddenly Sahm.

Now back to your regularly scheduled programming.

5 comments:

  1. Believe me, you are not alone with this struggle. When asked by strangers what I do for a living, I reply that I work from home ...

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  2. I hope this doesn't come across the wrong way but to me, it seems pretty obvious that you know what you want. You didn't choose to be a stay at home mom, you're not exactly happy in that role and you know it's not enough for you. Like you said, there is nothing wrong with that. I guess I just think it's pretty clear.

    I am a stay at home mom, too. And like you, I am not good at making friends on my own. I have some really good friends back home but I made all of them via work or school. And back before my life was crazy with two kids. I've tried the meet up groups. I just struggle with making friends. And it sucks. I get very lonely, too. And yes, talking to your young child is NOT the same kind of social interaction that you get from adults.

    I also worry about my husband's burden of providing for us. We've had many, many discussions about it. My husband also is supportive. But that doesn't stop me from worrying about spending money that I don't feel like is mine. Or worrying about the load that my husband has to carry...no matter how much he tells me otherwise.

    I guess I'm just trying to tell you that many stay at home moms feel this same way that you do. Not all of us are totally fulfilled by hauling the kids to soccer and baking cupcakes. Being a stay at home mom IS hard work. It's just not the kind of work you're used to.

    But I don't think that means staying at home doesn't have a high value in life. Being at home with is what you make it. I did choose to be a stay ay home mom and was shocked that it wasn't what I thought it was going to be. But my personal reasons for becoming a stay at home mom keep me focused and I am constantly trying to find ways to make it better.

    But you didn't choose this so don't feel like you have to make it work. Kick up your job search, even if it's something part time. You already know this isn't for you (in my opinion) so start moving forward. I think you'll feel better once you do.

    Again, I hope this doesn't come across the wrong way. My husband always tells me that he wishes he could have my job (staying at home) and I just laugh because I know he wouldn't last two weeks! It's not for everyone! Good luck!

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  4. I totally understand you. It isn't that you don't want the job. It's that the job was HANDED to you. I am like you. I carefully weigh each choice I make. I cried when I found out I was pg with my third. Not because I was certain that I didn't want to have another baby. But because I have always over-thought and over-planned everything. And this was handed to me.

    I love him more that than life, but I had to get over all the thoughts and feelings that rushed over me at the time. It was a pro/con list after the fact that kept popping up in my mind.

    You have great perspective. You see it as a privilege to be with your child but you don't romanticize motherhood.

    I hate it when people do that! Those, 'Oh I just LOVE being pregnant!' people. That isn't real life. You see it for what it is, the whole package. Nothing wrong with that. You are still at home. That is your choice at this very moment.

    If and when you return to work outside the home you will do the exact same thing. Appreciate what it brings but also see the short comings that come along with it.

    Welcome to the contemplator's club! We who have the 'gift' of continuous introspection!

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  5. What about volunteering somewhere??? OOOORRRR, working at a quilting store part time???? You'll find what you are looking for eventually... I thought the time we had off (when we first moved to NM) would be the greatest thing in the world... but you are right - you get bored and if you aren't a social butterfly (and B & I are not)... you get really bored. :-)

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