For more than twelve years I have been a stay at home mom. That was always a good enough reply when people would ask me what I do. It was acceptable because I had small children at home during the day. This past fall my two youngest children entered kindergarten. Last May when they finished preschool I began to get a lot of questions and comments about my plans for when they entered school full time, such as:
Are you going back to work?
What are you going to do all day?
Are you going to find a job to do at home?
Maybe you should do daycare.
You should go back to school.
I usually replied that I wasn't sure what I wanted to do yet. I really wanted to scream. Why is it anyones business and what does it matter to them what I do? Why suddenly do I not have value unless I am doing something besides staying home and being a mom? Is my value dependent on income alone and nothing else? What changed besides my kids being in school all day?
When people asked what I am going to do all day I wanted to say:
Whatever the fuck I want,
Mind your own business,
or sleep, read blogs, clean, relax and screw around.
I never say these things, and I wish I could. I don't because there is too much judgement.
Truthfully, I am not ready to face starting all over yet. I have been busting my ass, surrounded by little people all day for over twelve years. I'm tired and have been dealing with medical issues so I am taking a break. Is that really too much to ask? The thought of finding a job to fit my kids school schedule so I can be home when they are home is overwhelming. So, for now I am just fine with being home for a while, during their school hours. I wonder why so many people do not think this is fine. My value is more than a paycheck.
My contribution to the household is time instead of money. Why do so many people think money is the most important thing of all? MOM is the most important job I could dream of having. That job did not disappear when my youngest kids went to school. I am still just a mom. I just have a little more time to take care of me. Is there a problem with that?