I worked full time and had the two oldest in daycare. My hubby worked in town at the time and I never saw him. Long hours for both of us with me doing the housework and the childcare after work. Remember doing laundry at midnight listening to him snore...grrrr....but in hubby's defence he was up and out at 5 am and home at 8pm. I was up at 6 30 am and home by 4 30pm. IT WAS NUTS! Weekends were spent doing overtime...for both of us at times..or yard work and chores. Family time? Occasionally but not enough. The stress was enormous! I had suffered two miscarriages in 8 months on top of it all. Our marriage was getting shaky, our kids were acting out and our health was suffering. At this time we looked at each other and realized we were on path to WHAT? Why are we working so much? I QUIT MY JOB! With no notice either....talk about burning your bridges...gulp! We just leaped into the ONE pay cheque family mode and made the best of it.
LOVED being at home with Ben and Joe....we went to parks and swimming and gymnastics. Cut back on our budget BIG TIME! Made all of our food from scratch, clothes were second hand and had one vehicle...and still do that now. Went to Mexico a few times with the bonus from work. Go to the Island or the Sunshine coast once a year..but it's all budgeted and planned. Living on ONE income with 6 people is a balancing act. We don't go to the movies often..maybe twice a year. We do not own a trailer or RV or boat or quads or any other such toys. My buddy Brian sources bikes and scooters for me at garage sales and I pay him a few bucks to fix them up. After tax season ends is when we replace a pool or trampoline or buy furniture. Some days I wish I was back at my old job and making the money I made so we could afford more. I wish I had catered lunches and the respect of my colleagues..lol...I dream of my work wardrobe sometimes..lol..I sometimes wish that I could escape from the unpredictability of parenting and command a board meeting with all paying attention to what I have to say...Maybe I can teach the kids to listen to me like business partners? HMM? LOL!
Most of my friends work outside the home. BUT they either work shorter hours, have grandparents looking after the kids, have shifts that get them home early or are two ships passing in the night with hubby. We all have to do what we have to do. One friend could never be an at home parent and she admits it without guilt. A professional and will always be that. Her kids are cared for by a nanny. She can afford vacations and private school and all the extras and GOOD FOR HER! Her kids are happy and have opportunities my kids will never have. It's her choice! My other friend works her fingers to the bone at Tim Hortons. Took years to get a regular shift and it's always early mornings. But she is home right after school and even on a limited income enjoys cooking with the 3 kids...going for walks. They are all creative with painting and music. No cable but the library has CDs for free. It's all in our OWN choices!
I resent the media pitting woman against woman. We all have to make sacrifices as Moms...in all capacities. You miss baby's first word or you have to use clothe diapers...OR BOTH! I'm lucky to be home...and I KNOW IT! I feel a sense of community with my full time working Mom friends. Need a pick up after school? I'm there! Just as she invites my child over for a play date as she knows I'm having a bad day. Working Mom can't make a meeting at school or an assembly? Just call me and I will fill you in or video tape the event. Working Mom pays through the nose for taxes to support Autism programs and such. We work together despite what the media reports or tries to shove down our throats. Women need to support each other...ALWAYS! Got that dam Barney song in my head "I love you...you love me...we're a happy family..."....LOL! But it's true! Women are a community amongst themselves and we excel at COMMUNICATING! It's AWESOME!
So media biased assholes...hit the road Jack..and don't come around here no more no more! I wish I had taken that Mom aside in a calm manner and asked her if I could help in any way...if maybe she felt she missed out on an assembly or field trip with her child...she was obviously feeling guilty she missed something with her child...and I get that all too well. Think I will invite her for tea and get to know her better. I bet we will find that we are not so different..and want the same things for our kids...and really are just trying to be the best Moms we can given our circumstances and choices. Hugs work wonders too.
Big Momma LOVE to you all...and HUGGLES too! XO