1. You know your little darling best. No one, in the whole world is genetically, emotionally and intuitively formatted to understand the needs of their own precious little children, except you. Picture this; your baby is in the other room and they cry out. You intuitively know that its actually your baby and not someone else’s baby. You’re wired for their sound. You also know, by their sound, if your little dear is having a tantrum or if they’ve actually just hurt themselves and need you. You’ll know by the tone of their cry, whether they’re just tired and it’s been a long day or if they’re actually sick and coming down with something. Who else but a mommy is intrinsically wired to sense her baby’s whereabouts and is alert to the fact that little cutie pie has been quiet too long and needs to be checked up on.
2. Your influence is far more valuable than a teacher or caregiver, right?
This is where it’s important to remember that quantity time counts a lot. No matter how hard you might try to teach your children the things that you believe are important, it’s pretty hard to impart everything in an hour or so each night after a long day. Little cutie is awake and with someone else for 8–12 hours per day and they are absorbing the thoughts, actions, style, values and preferences of that other person, consciously and subconsciously all day everyday. Children are very smart and they learn with all of their senses. They naturally play monkey see monkey do and I want to be the mama monkey.
3. Its stressful to leave your very own little dears for the bulk of their day with someone else. Is it even worth it? First you have to wake up and leave at an outrageously early hour, pack lunches, get everyone dressed and get your head together just to leave the house. Then there’s the daily grind of facing the weather, the cost of gas, daycare, clothes and fast food because you’re tired at the end of the day when you’ve given your all at work. Then there’s the worry of whether their needs are actually being met, the scheduling off work if their sick and the guilt of not being the one whose there for them. What’s it like at work when you have to ask for time off to take children to the doctor or the dentist? How about when they’re sick unexpectedly and you have to call in, again? What’s it like when things have been especially busy and you just want to have some special time with them? Explain that to your boss! When you’re at home, you’re the boss, the CEO and the person who calls the shots. And there’s no such thing as playing hooky, you’re just having an exploration day or a personal recovery day, or whatever the heck you want to call your quality, time with your little dears. Imagine the freedom from stress to be able get up in the morning and you decide how you’re going to spend your day.
4. Time off feels so good, and going away is actually some well deserved freedom. I don’t even need 5 reasons to be a stay at home Mom after thinking about this reason. If you’re home with your children on a regular basis, guess what? When you decide that its grownup time, vacation time away from them, there’s no guilt, no stress because you’re with them all the time. You’re glad for a break and guess what? They don’t actually miss you either, because you’re always there for them. It’s lovely to say to the children that I’m going away for a weekend business trip or an actual vacation for a week, and all they want to know is who’s taking care of us and what privileges do we get while I’m away.
5. You’re actually training them every day for life. I’ve heard friends talking about training and not training their children and are they doing it right or wrong. I figured something out that is awesome and frightening at the same time. You are training your children night and day, day and night. Think about it. Training is monkey see monkey do and those little monkeys see it all.
One day you’re all set to be ‘Awesome Mom’ and you have goals and plans and quality time set. You start packing for a picnic, or getting out the new learning toys. You set up a play date with super high quality friends who you know will have a good influence on your little ones, but your little dears didn’t understand the program for the day. One of them won’t get on their socks no matter how much you bribe and cajole them. The other one spills their cereal bowl and the other one starts fighting with the first one. This is the day, in spite of great plans, you lose it. Don’t they know what a great Mom you are and don’t they understand the plans you had to train them that day, to help them grow up and to be successful. So you yell at everyone, cancel your plans and stay home and drink coffee. Sigh. Epic Fail. That’s how bad days can go. Unfortunately you did train them that day. You trained them to know that sometimes life is overwhelming and you can react badly.
Don’t leave me now! Its not over! The next day, you take your little ones to a water park hotel for the weekend. The big kids run off to go down the big scary water slides and you take the littlest with you and you slide down a baby water slide with him on your lap. Since you’re a grownup you slide down too quickly and zing right off the end of the matt and scrape both of your knees very badly. Because you’re saving little pumpkin from going under the water and you want to teach him to enjoy swimming and not to be afraid, you sit in the water laughing and feeling embarrassed and you know your knees are bleeding. Then you finally climb out of the water, knowing there’s blood pouring down from your knees and they really, really hurt, but you’re trying to keep acting like water slides are super fun. Then you meet up with the rest of the family, laughing your head off, in total embarrassment, but you know that it’s more important to keep up the good face and not worry about yourself, and you make sure that the little one doesn’t see that you’re bleeding. You’re also thinking about how stupid you’re going to look later that night in your cute little short dress at the meeting, but your little darlings are more important. Yay! Epic success! Now the older children see that you’re willing to put their needs ahead of yours and not act like a baby. And that day, you were training them again, but it was good training. Realize they’re absorbing everything about you and it’ll help you to be wise and strong and mature. Aim high. Do your best. Forgive yourself and try again.
Finally, if you have to leave your children with trusted caregivers and go to work, or if you’ve chosen a worthwhile career and are doing your best to provide for and train your children, then I want you to know that I love you and I admire you.