Friday, January 20, 2012

To Stay or To Work

Hi all,

I hope everyone is enjoying the New Year. Though it started on a rough note for Nigerians with the removal of subsidy on gas, it also opened the people's eyes to the height of corruption displayed by the leaders. People came together to protest but it turned out that the corruption did not skip the labor tent. The subsidy was increased, people felt betrayed but people are moving on.

So far I haven't been doing badly with the goals I set for this month.#patting myself on the back# but it is just 20 days into the year so anything can still happen right?  I have managed to keep my phone away from tea parties and I have been able to spend quality time with my family without distractions from my phone or T.V. I have also  put in 'Me' time twice since the year started. As for sleep I have been doing 5 hrs straight and I think that is a good start. Exercise is a different thing. I haven't done much in that area except maybe dance to Flavour *does that count?* 

After I had my first baby and I had to go back to work, I found it a bit difficult juggling everything. I had no help in the house, my husband was away on official assignment abroad, I had to wake up early everyday, drop my baby off and then after work pick her up from my mom. Though my mom wanted me to stay over at her place till I got a help or my husband got back, I guess I didn't want to impose and I was a tad stubborn those days* I wanted to be a supermom, rme* It got so bad that I had a discussion with my husband that if he  would pay me half of what I was making working, I was going to stay at home and take care of the baby. Ofcourse he said no. Then I got a house help and my MIL came around so things eased up.

As a working mom, everyday I found it very difficult to leave my child to go to work. I am sure it was more difficult for me than her. I called home when I was free to bombard my MIL with silly questions like "was she playing well? is she smiling etc" I just felt like I was missing out. I felt guilt that my work kept me away and I didnt witness her  first steps, The first time she ate eba, the first time she counted to 5, the first time she said "dadi," which by the way was her first word etc. I felt like I failed.

The past year, I have stayed home with my children, enjoyed all their milestones. And I am here wondering why I felt like I was missing in the first place. There are good days, days that i felt like this is how it was meant to be and  then there are days I just wished I had a job outside the house. Staying at home with my children everyday is a constant test in patience, perseverance, humility...and might I add absence of privacy

I was watching a morning show last week and they were discussing the cold war between working moms and stay at home moms. Stay at home moms feel they are better than the working moms because they made a choice to stay at home and take care of their family and the working moms are viewed as selfish for working. One working mom shared a story of when she had an elbow pain and she had to go see the doctor. The nurse at the doctor's office first asked if she stayed home with the kids when she said no, the nurse went ahead to tell her that her elbow was bothering her because she is trying to do too much when all she should do is to stay home with her kids. Meanwhile the woman went in for her elbow o.

I smell envy and resentment of the working mom in most of the arguments cos she chose to have an identity outside of the home. I believe that as long as a mom is comfortable with whatever decision she has chosen, the children will do well either way. If as a working mom, you carry loads of guilt, always wishing you were home with your kids, you might not give your best at work and the time spent with your kids, you don't want to let them go. If as a stay at home mom you are resentful, bored and depressed after giving up your day job, your kids might not be as happy as they would be if they went to day care. Do what makes you happy and don't resent the person who has made a decision different from yours.


Image from Bing images

Would you be a working mom or a stay at home mom?



26 comments:

  1. Woow, I am just hearing this one o. I plan to run my business when I start having kids and not do 9-5.
    I doubt that I can be a stay home mum. I hope this doesn't cause envy sha. lol

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    1. LOL @ causing envy. Do what works for you dear

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  2. I honestly think I would love being a stay at home mom, but I feel like I would disappoint my parents, husband, family and friends if I just walked away from all my medical training. It's an internal struggle I have been having for a long time. I think once I am done with residency I will do a bit of both and work part time so that I am home with my kid(s) more...

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    1. Awww. Maybe working part time will help.

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    2. Amy, my feelings exactly!!!! i dont mind being a stay at home mom but i just feel i have to work out something that wont make ma family and friends think iv been jazzed to give it all up.

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  3. Congratulations on your achievements so far,i'm really proud of you.*hugs*

    As for the stayhome mums and the working mum issue,my take on it is simple,try as much as possible to spend enough time with your children,at thesame time,you shouldn't always be with them.So,for me it's a kind of work that won't make you stay away all day or stay in all day.

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  4. Hummmmm.... I really cant tell what I will be yet. If you have more than one kid, i think it makes financial sense to stay home( in my part of the world)

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    1. Childcare is so expensive this side of the world too.

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  5. hmmm,stay home vs working mum...i plan to do my own business when i start having kids...no 9-5. funny i was still talking about how most lagos working mums hardly have time for their kids

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    1. I used to be that lagos working mom o. We spend saturdays in the car cos work didnt end on fridays anymore. To spend time with my kids, I take them with me on my saturday appointments.

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  7. I can't imagine being a stay at home mom. Hopefully by the time I'm married and have kids, I will be out of the banking sector and working in a more flexible environment or doing my own thing. I would love to spend as much time as possible with my family. I think it has to do with you thinking deeply about what you really want and finding a healthy balance. *My twopence.

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    1. Finding balance for what works for you is key

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  8. I'm not looking forward to the day that 5 hours of sleep will be considered a good start for me :(

    I've always gotten the idea that stay home moms vs. working moms generated some kind of beef. Not sure I could ever be a stay home mom; I might drive myself nuts with boredom, but hey, never say never right?

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    1. I personally would prefer when I have kids, at least for the first one year that my wife stays home to take care of them but with the way things are and her preferences, I might have to compromise on some stuffs... It is well.

      - LDP

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    2. @miss.fab: I really think the beef is unnecessary. Everyone has their own parenting style that works for them, so they should be allowed. I pray you dont get to the point where 5 hrs of sleep is a good start too.

      @ LDP: It is well prof

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  9. Happy New Year Okeoghene! I tell you, I would be a stay at home in a heartbeat! But I guess that is easy for me to say cos I have worked all my life. People never believe me when I say I will not miss it AT ALL. In fact, I did do the full time mommy thing for a year once and I LOVED it and so did my kids then. I spent my free time writing and making money from articles I sent in to the local papers. Of course being abroad helped but I would still do it now but its just not financial viable for my family rightnow and that is the truth but soon by God's grace. Soon. Cos this woman is TI-RED! And truth is, no matter what we say and how hard we try to balance our lives as working wives and moms, something always suffers even if its just a tiny bit.......

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    1. Happy New Year DNW.I feel you about attaining that balance, something always gives

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  10. If "the husband agrees to pay me, ill stay at home.lol. I think ill still work, maybe not just the very demanding, time consuming type of work

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    1. Yes o. I propositioned him and he said No. Do what works for you dear

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  11. I would be a stay at home in a heart beat if my husband can make enough money for the family and pay me a personal allowance,my fave place is with my family, then again i have practically worked all my life so who knows!

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  12. I have recently wondered at how new moms are able to stay away from their babies. You must have observed from my comments that i am with a family with kids. I cant bear to leave the house because of the sweetest 7month old and i am not even the mom :o!

    I dont know which i prefer, in a perfect world it will straddle the two.

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  13. Your thoughts echo my heart cry as a mom. My son is 22 months and Praise God, he has never spent a day in a daycare ( or hospital... Praise God) but to get this, I had to hustle to get get family members to watch him. it's the next best thing to having me. Women never know the impact motherhood has on their hearts till they actually became mom. Hmmm....May God show us both the way. Great Post!

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  14. I've just come across your blog today and I'm liking it, particularly this post, I did a similar post recently about the SAHM and working mum, one thing I liked about your post is "Do what makes you happy and don't resent the person who has made a decision different from yours" that's just so on point. I know some women who don't want to be a SAHM even though they have the opportunity to, not everybody wants to spend 24 hours with their children, that's a fact and there's no reason to condemn them for it, it's their choice.

    http://www.bukkyapampa.com/the-need-to-justify/

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