Sunday, March 20, 2011

A mom is a mom

I read a lot of blogs and message boards and it seems like there is always this debate over being a Working Mom (WM) versus a Stay at Home Mom (SAHM) What's better for my family? What's better for me? What's easier? The questions of what's better for you and your family really varies from family to family and from situation to situation. But there is one question that has a universal answer in my opinion and that is "Which one is easier, WM or SAHM?" and the answer? A resounding "NEITHER!"

A mom is a mom first. Whether she works in the home or outside of the home, she does lose part of her identity when she becomes a mother. Her hands reach to cut her child's food before she even considers cutting her own. She sleeps with one ear towards the baby monitor, always listening for a cough or a cry. I oftentimes don't make enough time for myself because I work so hard to balance being a mom, wife, sister, friend and worker. Whether you work in the home or outside of the home, there is still the struggle to "have it all."

A mom has to sacrifice. It doesn't matter if you stay at home or if you work, the sacrifice is there. I get up an hour earlier so that I can work, work out and get myself ready before my kids get up. I used to skip lunches with friends so that I could pump in my car while I ate a cold sandwich. I have canceled dinner with my husband because one of my kids was sick. Its a sacrifice but I would do it in a heartbeat for my children.

A mom has fears. She fears that she doesn't do enough with her kids. She fears that they don't eat enough or eat the right things. She fears her kids are doing one thing too much and another thing not enough. She fears her child will get sick. These fears are the same whether you stay home or work. Your child's well being is always on your mind.

A mom needs more. She needs more sleep, more time alone, more time to clean, cook, organize. To me, this is true whether you have all day at home or just a few hours. There is never enough time in the day to do all of the things that need to be done as a mom. You could give me 24 hours straight to just do stuff and it still wouldn't be enough.

A mom wants to be good enough. She wants to be a good mom, a good wife, a good friend, a good cook. I know I struggle every day to make sure I am good enough. I want to be a mom that my kid's are proud of, a wife that my husband is proud of, a shoulder my friends can lean on and heck, I love cooking a good meal too! Whether you stay home or work outside the home, every mom has those fears and insecurities that she can't do it all.

I have friends that are SAHM's and friends that are WM's and we all have a lot in common. In the end, we love our children like crazy and we just want to get it right. We sacrifice, we worry and we don't always take enough time for ourselves. All we can do is support one another and realize that the feelings we have about being mothers are shared whether your job is at home or not.


Amy said...

You took every word of this right out of my mouth. Thank you for writing this when I couldn't. I love you!

Mandy said...

I 100% agree!

I love being a SAHM, but it's not easy. It's a 24/7 job. I don't get many breaks. We're sacrificing a lot of money for me to do it. And yet, if I had to work, I know that I'd also be doing 2 jobs (outside and inside the home), not getting many breaks, and sacrificing time with my son- just to name a few.

I think there are legitimate reasons for being either, and you have to make the choice that is right for your family. I just don't see why moms get so catty about things like this. Instead of bantering back and forth about formula feeding vs. breastfeeding, cloth diapering vs disposable, working mom vs SAHM, they should be supporting each other and lifting each other up. Thank you for the reminder to do so.

Nela Lucey said...

Extremely well said! I know I couldn't have written that, but I definitely have all of those same feelings. You do such a great job with your blog!

Jeannie said...

You are so right on all accounts. We want the best for our kids and our families as a whole no matter where we spend our days. Eloquently said!!!

Megan said...

You couldn't have hit that nail on the head any better!
I have to give a hats off to the working mom. I know its hard when I leave to go to work my measly 6 hours a week, so I can't even imagine doing any more than that. I miss that little man (no matter how crazy he's driven me at home) and no matter how much time I spend one on one with him at home, I always want to be the one who does everything for him. I don't think either mom gets enough credit and both catch a lot of hell. Working moms are often told they are neglecting their kids no matter if they work by choice or by need, and stay at home moms are told they are lazy because they are in their pjs all day and don't have to do this or that. Both have their hardships and deserve MUCH more than they get for credit.
And yet, we do this job for free. Ahh motherhood. Putting yourself aside for the rest of your life for the life of another and loving every minute. Me thinks we are crazy! LOL

Danse said...

I love this post.

Nicole said...

I'm not a mom, but I really like your post! I love your blog!! I feel like I can learn something from it for when I have kids in the future!! Come check out my blog if you get a chance

Katie said...

Thank you for a well said post! I am SAHM, but also babysit in the house 4 days a week (it leaves me with 5 under 3 for 4 days). My friend who works outside the house always makes comments about how she would love to just stay at home with her kids and she would love to just hang out all day like I do. It frustrates me to no end, we are ALL busy and do our best. I don't let my kids watch tv, so from 6:30 am to 8:30 pm I am go go go with the kids trying to entertain them and do "school" stuff with them, and teach them as much as I can. Being a mom is the most difficult but MOST REWARDING job ever. Thanks for reminding all of us that no matter the situation you have it is WORK!

Amy said...

great post! i think the reason there will never be a real answer to the "what's best?" question vs. WM or SAHM is bc there isn't one. they are both work, and equally as challenging. the ONLY difference is one pays in money, and one doesn't. it's like comparing apples to apples.

The Lane Family said...

This post was so great and I think you hit the nail on the head about being a stay home mom or being a working mom...regardless it is the most AMAZING experience and the hardest thing you will ever do to be a mother.

I am a SAHM now but I was a working mom so I know both sides of the coin.

Thank you for this amazing post!!!

Once Upon A Time said...

Thanks for this post. So true.