Being a stay at home mom is such an interesting role. I didn't really give it much thought until I became one, of course. Motherhood has opened my eyes and given me a different perspective on life entirely. Funny how that happened.
I was out with girlfriends this week and one of them was praising her mother for the work she does outside the home. She said something to the effect of, "I'm so proud of my mom. She was just a stay at home mom for 10 years and now she's worked her way up to this really great job."
The word that made the most impact on me was just.
What does it mean to be just a stay at home mom?
I know bloggers debate the merits of staying at home with your children vs. working ad nauseum. That is not my purpose. I'm more concerned with how society views women who chose to stay home to raise their children. I'm concerned that my daughter will think less of me for not having a "real" job. For just raising her.
The truth is, my mama didn't raise no dummy. I was valedictorian of my class in high school. I was pre-med and I have a Master's degree in Biology. But I don't work outside the home. I could. I did. But I chose not to.
So why do I, along with so many others in my shoes, have such a stigma attached to our role? Like somehow we are less intelligent because we aren't technically employed?
It just struck me I guess.
And honestly, I couldn't care less what society thinks of me. But I do care about what my daughter thinks. Perhaps this is just a reminder to myself to show her women are valuable in so many ways. We have talents and skills and can chose to use them in anyway we desire. And whatever we chose, it doesn't make us less intelligent. Or useful.
Raising children, no matter how you do it, is tough work people. Breaking down the stereotypes of the world and forming these little minds is not for the faint of heart. It's the biggest challenge of my life, but one I'm taking head on. Somehow, my girl will know the job I hold now is no less important than the job I held before. That my brains did not simply ooze out of my head the day I stopped working.
Because just being a stay at home mom? Hardest thing I've ever done.