I've recently asked you on Instagram to send me your honest assumptions when it comes to stay-at-home moms and I want to thank the two people who have actually spared some time of their days to send me their insights on this subject. You know who you are and you made my day!

I'm going to be addressing these assumptions based of my personal experience being both a working mom and a stay-at-home mom and, at the end, I'll be also sharing my brief take on this topic. So, without further ado, let's get cracking!

"Being a stay-at-home mom is hard work/duty to have."

Definitely! Like I said in My Stay-at-home Mom Routine, being a parent already requires a lot of patience and dedication, it is one of the toughest jobs in the world, and being it 24/7 non-stop can definitely feel a bit overwhelming, and to some even a bit isolating at times. However, that's like with any other job. When you feel passionate about what you're doing all of the not so great moments easily become just a grain of sand at the bottom of the ocean.

Having experienced a couple of months of being a working mom made me realize how much harder it was, for me personally, to combine the two, particularly in the first year and a half.

Two things that made my decision to become a stay-at-home mom a lot easier were definitely the fact that I wasn't working my dream job together with feeling like the maternity leave is not nearly as close to the time frame that it should. Putting things in a scale, I didn't even have to think twice before deciding that I would much rather raise my child full-time in the early years of her life than to be giving away that precious time to a company who just looks at me as another replaceable asset.

Going back to work with sleep deprivation and having to be interrupted every so often to pump milk, then running back home to not being able to see my baby but still have all the house chores to do was way much more overwhelming than dedicating my full attention to a toddler who's talking all day long, finding nice activities for us to do and pushing my boundaries and insecurities when it comes to engage with other parents and kids on a regular basis.

No matter how hard it feels at times, at the end of the day, when I look at her and I see how emotionally balanced and how much she has developed throughout these three years makes me so much prouder than any job I had in my entire life and I really wouldn't want it any other way.

"You loose finance independence and being that something so important, it must only be hard to abdicate that in order to become a full-time mom."

I found this to be such a great input because being someone who started working at the age of seventeen only to become independent as soon as possible, I too was scared to give up of that freedom. In fact, this was the thing that scared me the most at first. In one hand I knew that I am doing something important and that money can't buy, on the other hand it felt weird not being able to bring money home anymore. But this experience taught me two main things related to this subject.

One | Spending almost an entire year not buying things for myself made me realize how much money I was actually spending regularly in unnecessary things. This may sound super cliche but I actually learned to appreciate a lot more the simplicity and all things that money can't buy. I realized how much I already own and that it is in fact more than enough to live a happy life.

Two | In the end my financial independence remains the same. After having my first child, I found myself working just so that I could pay for the daycare. I'm not joking when I'm telling you that my entire salary was the price of the daycare for the time frame that we needed. I was keeping a job to pay for someone else to take care of my child whom I couldn't see for longer than three days per week and, in the end, have the same money in my account.

Putting things into a different perspective, when you're living in a relationship where the gains and expenses are equally shared it kind of works out the same way. True, it sucks sometimes having to ask money for certain things, but then again, that actually helps me to stop and think about the benefits of purchasing said things, like is it really worth it? I still have money to spend on what I need or want and I do not need permission to spend it, which is only fair since we're both working for the sake of our family, only one job is paid in cash and the other isn't. It's all a matter of finding a good balance and keeping an open mind.

My take on this

Every time I see the topic of stay-at-home moms being discussed, particularly by women who aren't moms themselves, I see these main fears/assumptions being raised:

You become dumb over time and won't be able to work again.
You won't ever have time for yourself.
You will feel isolated, loose self-esteem and be depressed.

As a stay-at-home mom for over three years now, I am here to tell you this.

First and foremost, it doesn't have to be a permanent thing. Just because we decide to put a pause in our careers or leave our jobs to raise our kids full-time doesn't mean that we will never be capable of working again. I now have a lot more time and mind space to learn and develop my skills than I ever did whilst working a full-time job. In fact, when I was working full-time even before having kids, I found myself just wasting my free time either on unproductive things or doing the house chores instead of using it for self-development or self-care.

As soon as my first child turned two years old, I felt a huge pressure from a few people to go back to work, because like they said "it is important for your self-esteem". It's funny to think that to these people keeping a paid job, even though it didn't contribute one bit to my happiness, was more important than raising my child full-time and feel fulfilled doing so.
I don't know about you, but I personally do not build my self-esteem from being at a job only for the money nor do I feel less alone for having to deal with the same people everyday simply due to circumstances. I am free to approach people on the street, to meet with other parents in the same situation as I am, to engage with other people every time we get out of the house. I don't feel like being a stay-at-home mom deprives me of interaction with other people, in fact, I find it to be quite the opposite.

If anything I am much more confident in myself now and I'm happy to say that my depression has been a thing of the past because I am finally doing something that truly fulfills me. Every day that passes, I feel more grateful for this opportunity and am more confident that I took the right decision.

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