I've been a full time stay-at-home mom for 4 1/2 years. When Reagan was born, I worked 3 days a week. When Maddie was born, I quit my job to stay at home full time. Let me tell you, I was terrified.
I was very afraid I would sit at home all day in my pajamas and slowly, but surely, lose my mind. Without any "reason" to make myself gets showered and dressed, I worried that I just never would.
But as the years passed, I was pleasantly surprised to find this stay-at-home stuff was pretty cool. I heard other moms say on occasion that they had to go back to work because they were losing their minds, but I have never felt that way. Sure, there were a few bad days here and there. But for the most part I loved it.
Three little kids keeps me pretty busy. I pick the same things up probably half a dozen times a day and there is always some sort of snack or food that needs preparing or serving. Laundry is now a twice-a-week affair which finds me spending a lot of time scrubbing at Reagan's school clothes to get out one stain or another.
In between all the household jobs, there are little people who need their Momma. Reagan has been working very hard at reading (and making great progress) and often has other little bits of homework. Maddie needs to be transported to and from preschool and likes to play games on her days off. Hunter just generally wants to be fed or carried or entertained in some fashion. Brian needs a listening ear when he gets home. There's a lot to do.
But I have found that God somehow stretches the time for me. So often I wake up with a million things on my to-do list and wonder how I will get it all done. But I do get it done and even have time for the 30 minutes of reading with Reagan, the game of Candyland with Maddie or tickling Hunter with his stuffed bunny.
I know some SAHMs resent being asked to do all the volunteering for school and church. I do get some calls to help with various organizations. But I don't get mad about it. I have the time to help others and I actually think it is part of my purpose in staying home right now. That's not to say I don't draw the line and say no. I do so from time to time. But I don't get mad when others call to ask for help. No's can be a healthy thing to say - and yeses can be a great blessing to give others.
I am often amazed and how God gave me just enough time in the day to do what needed to be done. I don't feel rushed or overwhelmed. I am not bored (ha ha ha - oh my - far from it). It all feels right.
Yesterday I took Maddie and Hunter to the park. Maddie pedaled her little bike and I walked (briskly) behind with Hunter in the stroller. As we walked on what had to be the most beautiful day ever, I was blown away by how great it was that this was my life. Do I really get to do this? I was so thankful that I had the time and opportunity to be with my kids. I pushed them both in the swing and thought about the things at home I had yet to do - but I did not worry. I knew I would have the time to do those little jobs still unchecked on my to do list.
This staying home was our choice and we've done what we needed to do to make it work. We've made some choices and sacrifices to live the way we do - to allow me to stay home with the kids. It was scary and a big unknown 4 1/2 years ago.
I just never expected to love it this much. I never expected to feel so balanced and at ease with so little "structure". I never expected that I would be this happy doing such mundane things. I never knew God's purpose for my life would be to simply love and nurture my family.
But I have found my place and purpose and I am extremely grateful.