I will never forget the day my husband told me those words. You see, it wasn’t so much as the surprise of me quitting my job. It was the surprise of how soon. We had planned or better yet, I had planned to work through the summer, saved up my salary for those weeks, use it to pay off some debt my husband and I had to then be able to stay home.
It was going to work out fine. My husband started his company with an old business colleague/friend. He could get medical insurance so the need for me to work in order for us to have benefits was no longer an issue.
By this time, I had my son. It wasn’t just us 3 (hubby, daughter and I) and the dog. My son was 2 years old. My daughter was 7 years old. From my last blog, if we are going to use it as a timeline. She was about to start a new private school for kids with special needs/learning differences.
There was the pressure for me to keep working financially. There was pressure for me to stay home. The guilt of watching my daughter struggle and not having enough time in the day was painful. On top of that, having an active 2-year-old was rough. Working full time and having to rush to pick them up from the in laws to then rush home and struggle with her doing homework, my son wanting to play, getting them bathed and cooking dinner all at the same time made me wonder why I didn’t have a nervous breakdown sooner.
So, I chose home. My daughter needed me to be more available to her. My son was beginning to give me concerns as well, so I needed to be home. Home. No need to rush off in the morning to take my son to my mother-in-law to watch him. Yes, in the Cuban culture, it is very normal for the grandmothers to stay home with the grandchildren if possible. But my husband would head straight to work now instead of dropping my daughter off at school. I could now take her to school and give her daily pep talks if needed.
I enjoyed being with my son all day. No pressure from work. For the first few weeks it felt good. It was calming. However, most women whom I have spoken with all say the same thing. No matter how stressful or how hard you worked at your former job, you work harder at home.
Ok, it is not the mental pressure as before but the physical work. The struggle to constantly be picking up a mess, organizing, keeping my son entertained, his schedule, cooking dinner, doing homework with my daughter and on and on was exhausting. I was fine with staying home. Yet, I was dragging my butt.
Husbands love the fact their wives are home. They feel now you have all the free time in the world and no excuses. When you forget to do something, or you’ve had one of those days in the memory books for how many things can go wrong at once; you will still be met with a disapproving look. Especially, if you are unable to manage a task, he has given you.
It reminds me of a hilarious mommy meme where the mother says, “Just say thank you, your children are still breathing after the day I had.” In fact, some husbands just think we are sitting in front of the TV catching up on the latest episode of Real Housewives. Well, not every day.
Of course, we all know if they had to do our job for one day, they would be howling like a dog that had just been stepped on. They don’t realize and not necessarily on purpose how many things mothers juggle and have to remember on a daily basis. Just putting together a lunch for school has its own challenges. From the right color thermos, to remember to put ketchup, to cut the crust off the bread, etc.
Stay at Home Mothers are not just housewives. They are the CEOs of the home. They are the glue. They manage to serve everyone’s needs and remember everyone’s preferences. Yet, it is usually late at night before they can get to something for themselves. As I am writing this blog at midnight.
So, this blog is for all the stay-at-home moms. We see you and know your struggle. It is real. It is serious. And it is underappreciated. If you haven’t heard a thank you in a long time, or are having one of those days, I would just like to say…
I would be wrong to not mention all the working mothers, who juggle so much in the mornings, to then rush off to work, having to put in a full productive day, then rush home with the kids for dinner, baths, homework, projects, etc.
Us women are truly a remarkable creation! We do so much.
So, for all the husbands out there, make sure you give your wife a sweet kiss and say thank you. It will give her added energy and lets her know she is appreciated. Especially, on the days of where everything is going wrong.
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