Stay at Home Mom or Stuck at Home Mom??

 

When you have the opportunity to take maternity leave and then are able to stop work altogether to be home with your babies and young toddlers, you know you are incredibly lucky. Many women around the world simply do not have that luxury – the financial imperative to return to work is too great.

And so it was always with quite some guilt that I would complain to my friends and family about being ‘stuck at home with the kids’. I was well aware that I really was very lucky to be able to do so.

But even knowing that I was ‘lucky’ couldn’t diminish the tedium, monotony, boredom and isolation, that being a stay at home mum can bring.

And it lasts years…

Although each new age changes circumstances, the monotony is still there – it just looks a bit different each year.

For me, returning to work was always an inevitability but as the years passed, it was less and clear what I was going to do. I didn’t want to return to recruitment (even though I did for a period) but I really had no idea what was next for me.

But now that I am on the other side of that journey, if there is something I could say to my ‘stuck at home mum’ self it would be this. Carve out some time every day (even if it is just 30 minutes) and spend some time thinking about what I might like to do one day. Start the process even if it is at a tiny step at a time. But the challenge for many women is to know where and how to even start that process.

And then I’d probably also encourage myself to change the language. Rather than saying ‘I’m a stuck at home mom’ change it to be ‘I get to stay at home’. And whilst that might not seem like a massive change, emotionally it changes the dynamics of that statement powerfully. It is a choice to stay home and be able to be the mother you want to be and whilst there are lots of downsides, there is an abundance of upsides. Sometimes though, it takes some prodding and introspection to take the time to really explore them.

So on those days where it feels so tedious and like you’re living Ground Hog Day, let’s start the process of mapping out the possibilities.

If you’d like some help to start that process, reach out and let’s make a time to chat.

 

Diana

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