Tuesday, November 22, 2011

Confessions of a SAHM

I was raised to become a high-powered whatever, always striving and racing to reach the highest heights, struggling valiantly to balance work, family, and home. Today I revel in the singlemindedness of Stay-at-Home Momdom.

I love my job! But I’m also slightly ashamed of it.

You see, I love being at home with my children. They give me an unprecedented and previously unimaginable sense of joy and wonder. And I feel a great sense of pride in watching them become bright, clever, happy people. I look at them in all their awesomeness and think, "I did that."

I also derive a sense of great accomplishment from cooking a well-balanced, delicious meal for my family. There, I said it. It's totally true, and I need to learn to own it. And, yes, you read right. I used the word "accomplishment." That's in part because I come from a long line of... what's the word that's the opposite of chef? Well, whatever that is, that's what my lineage is. My grandmother never lifted a finger in the kitchen (beyond cinnamon toast and the occasional batch of vegetable soup.) And while my mother certainly managed to get dinner on the table every night, her "recipes" were hit or miss (mostly because she never followed one). Most nights I somehow figure out how to read the recipe, do what it says, and render a pretty tasty result! And on nights when I improvise and make up my own concoctions (which isn't often - see previous sentences re: my mom), they usually turn out pretty good. Occasionally they're very good. And that's when I really feel proud. Because I did it (as my toddler would say) "All By Myself!"

I spend my days changing diapers, singing "Wheels on the Bus," chauffeuring my school-aged daughter around town, and I eat it up! My mother marvels at my infinite patience with the tediousness of my existence. But my secret is simple: I love what I do.

I finally understand what people mean when they talk about finding their passion. That's exactly what motherhood is to me.

But all the while I feel like the rest of the world is giving me a sideways glance filled with mild disappointment. I'm certain that many of my peers think my college education was a waste of time. I can only imagine that they must think that talking to me is unbearably boring because my world consists of playdough and playgrounds.

Don't get me wrong. I'm not so self-centered that I think people spend their free time thinking about what I do with my days. I'm a firm believer in that saying, "You'd stop worrying about what everyone thinks of you if you knew how seldom they did." But deep down I know this life that I have is not at all that I was groomed for. Still, I love it. I wouldn't have it any other way.