Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Sacrificing too much?

I guess it's a question that every mother has to ask herself. One thing I have clearly understood about motherhood is that it's insanely difficult to find the balance.

I've been a stay-at-home mom now for some years and overall, I enjoy it. Sometimes, though, I take a break from the constant diaper changing, breastfeeding, hand washing, nose and butt wiping and wonder . . . what the fuck am I doing?

How much sacrifice is too much?

I look at my house and all the work that needs to be done. It's a lot of work. Yet, the repairs and renovations go at a snail's pace because there's only one income. Two incomes would move the work along. Would make it so that I wouldn't feel embarrassed when folks visit and see the kitchen (my stove was manufactured in 1959--no joke) and the bathroom (which needed to be re-tiled about 10 years ago). We could have replaced all the doors at one time instead of doing the front door this month and the back door only God knows when. Two incomes would make the place ready to rent. Make getting out of this town more of a near-future possibility. And getting out of this town would be . . . fabulous.

I look at myself. The clothes I wear. Actually, the clothes I hate to wear. I'd like to go into a regular store (not the thrift store) and buy stuff that fits right and that's cute (on sale and on clearance of course because I still can't get with paying crazy high prices for things). Two incomes would help.

But then the other half of the time, I am overwhelmed by what a blessing it is that I can stay at home with my boys. There are many sacrifices involved but we eat well, are dressed well. Our home keeps us warm and sheltered. Plus we have small luxuries to boot. The hubby supports my staying at home (at least until Z2 is school age). It's not like I'm making the choice between staying at home and basic necessities. The choice I'm making is between staying at home and moving up and out quickly/looking the way I'd like to look.

And then there's homeschooling, something that I've had my heart set on to do for a long time. Full-time work and homeschooling seem incompatible. Could something work out?

My initial teaching certification expires in 2010. I'll renew but do I want to go back to teaching? My first experience was so traumatizing. Maybe dealing with 5 and 6 year olds would be better? Could I even get back into the field if I wanted? It's been almost 5 years since I graduated.

Eh, this post seems like reiterations of the same old issues but sometimes it just weighs so heavily on me. Am I sacrificing my very self to be a stay at home mom? Is it worth it?

I've actually been sort of looking for some kind of part time job--to make enough money to cover classes and stuff for the boys as well as maybe groceries and the things I need to make me feel, well, cute again and to just be out and functioning in a different capacity.

Keep your fingers crossed for me: I noticed that the hubby's alma mater doesn't have a crochet class in its School of Continuing Education. I proposed it to them. That would be great actually . . . working very part time, making decent money, doing something I like.


Anonymous said...

I think you will know when it gets to be too much. Part of what I blogged about recently (the BK) came about because I reached my breaking point.

Its been years (5) since we could visit family and friends, our stuff is raggedy and despite working, I am making no head way with the debt. Its a slightly different topic but similiar issues.

I think the fact that you are staying home and more or less feeling sane speaks to the fact that it can and is working.

That said, having done the SAHM gig plus I only work pt, I know being at home and seeing your house be less than what you want it to be is hard.

Girl, I feel you on the clothes. In my mind I want some fly vintage stuff but um, it ain't available at the will of goodness.

I agree that you should renew that teaching certificate but also look at other tutoring a possibility?

Miriam said...

I've come to the conclusion that I'll get it perfectly right....when the kids have all grown. lol!

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