Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Part I: Stay at Home Moms

I had originally planned on getting this post out a little earlier this morning, but wouldn’t you know, it’s happened again.  I’ve spilled a liquid on my laptop.  The first time I did it I was about 7 months pregnant and attempted to get up without support, kicking my iced tea onto my computer.  It was never the same again.  Today, I, unfortunately have no excuses.  I am addicted to coffee, and this addiction almost ruined a 1300 dollar laptop that was a present from my in laws (no one tell).  So, wow, do I tell my husband? Yea because I am a sucker. But, of course not until I try to fix it myself only leaving my husband two hours of work when he got home.

Well, here I am.  The computer is fine, thank God. 
Let’s start with the decision to actually become a stay at home mom.  It is not in the least an easy decision.  Usually, it is even hard to decide if it something you wish to do, nevertheless, if your family can afford it.  The truth is, it isn’t an easy decision.  There aren’t even two decisions.  There is no wrong and right.  In my opinion…everyone is entitled to their own opinion.  Some believe that no child is better left with someone other then their own parent.  Mother knows best, that is where your child will get the most nurturing environment.  Or, is it that a structured environment, with a structured day full of activities and socializing best?  Who knows.  Really all it comes down to is what is best for your family.

Let’s talk income.  You may think that any extra income is just that, extra income.  Yeah, not true.  Nannies are NOT cheap, and neither is daycare.  I was paying my nanny 400 a week.  That’s 1600 a month, a whole lot of money.  If you add that to gas money, lunch money, work clothes, and anything else a career mom/dad would need…Are you really making that much?  For some of you the answer may be yes.  If so, by all means, consider how much this is helping your family.  And don’t forget the inevitable taxes and how a two income family may effect this.
Here is a calculator that will help you decide if the second income is really worth it.  In our case we found out that yes, we were making more money, but it wasn’t enough for me to emotionally justify what I was loosing by working.

This is assuming that you do wish to stay at home with your children.  There are of course other things that come into this decision.  Some people would just much rather go to work during the week, knowing that their child is socializing, and that they are providing what they believe is a better future for their children.  Some individuals have put a lot into their career goals and no matter how much they love their children, they need something else.  This is perfectly fine.  Some days I wonder what I was thinking when I gave up the prospect of sitting in my office, having conversations that didn’t revolve around sleep patterns and bottles.  There are ways to have both a fulfilling family life, work life, and even personal life.  For me, this wasn’t an option.  Some of you may just know what is right for your family, others may want something more in the middle.  I love having an occasional work day.  It makes me feel like I have not put my education to waste, and I love being able to use my mind in different ways.

Staying at home with your children is no joke.  Luckily I had the luxury of knowing this before I quit my job.  There are long, boring days ahead, but there is also joy, love, and the greatest gift of all…watching your lessons and love transform a baby into a young man or women.  This week I hope to share some of the ups and downs that I have faced and even some great tips on staying happy and enjoying every minute with your little one!

1 comment:

  1. Well said Alicia! Hi, it's Lindsay from Music Together (Andrew's mom). How are you? Did you decide to move to Friday's class? I wanted to ask you if you were looking for more things for you and Nick to do or stuff for just you, I belong to an awesome mom's group where most of the events are in Hamden. If you are interested, send me an email: lindsayaiello@hotmail.com. Also, maybe one of these days we can have a playdate...Andrew seemed to like playing with Nick. Talk to you soon! :)


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