Wednesday, November 14, 2012

on staying at home

I'm nervous to write this post. Truly. I have butterflies in my gut right now, and I've been avoiding the task all morning. I've gotten up to pee, re-heated my coffee three times, made Ramen, folded laundry, unloaded the dishwasher, watched two episodes of Gossip Girl, nursed Simon, pumped a bottle, bought Christmas gifts online, re-organized the pantry, wrapped a wedding gift and written thank you notes. Now, I have no more excuses and it's time I pound this thing out.

I'm nervous to write about my decision to stay at home and not go back to work, because it's such a sensitive topic, and I don't necessarily think there's a right or wrong decision to make when it comes to this. I only think there's a right decision for each mama and a right decision for each child.

So, when you read about my decision to stay home with Simon, please don't hear me say that I think it's what every mom should do. In fact, I would guess that some moms are better moms because they go back to work. Every person is different, so every mom is, too.

I love a goal. I love a challenge. I love to master a discipline. Knowing this about myself always led me to believe that I'd be best suited to go back to work after having babies.

Little did I know that Simon would be the hardest work I ever did and the greatest goal I'd ever set.

I've never put more of my soul into anything. Literal blood, sweat and tears have paved this road for me.

On the outside, my days look like an endless reel of diaper changing, errand running, meal planning, dog walking, baby soothing and laundry folding. And to some, that may seem boring. But I've never felt more purpose in my life.

You know that wonderful exhaustion you feel after a hard day's work?

I get to feel that every day.

I'm sure that some people may think this makes me sound very simple. So be it.

I get to experience the refining power of selflessness every day: emotionally, financially and physically.

I'm a better Brett because of who I am when I'm at home with Simon. I'm more patient. I'm more driven. I'm more disciplined. I'm more confident. I'm more passionate. I'm more focused.

I experience my best self at home. And I want my best self for my son. That's why I stayed home.

This works for me. My soul is thriving. My marriage is thriving. My son is thriving. I'm satisfied.

Staying at home was the right decision for us. What was the right decision for you?




  1. congratulations on choosing to stay home! you're right, it's absolutely a choice, and there's no right answer for all mamas or babies. i chose to go back to work, with the caveat that - if i felt like it wasn't working - i could quit if i wanted to. so far, it's working for us. it's making me a better mama. the things you talk about, patience, caring, i am more of those things because i know how few hours i have with my precious girl. we haven't figured it all out yet, and i could change my mind at any time, but the thought of taking L away from her daycare teachers breaks my heart now. i feel like that says something about us making the right decision. good luck on your adventure in full-time stay at home mommyhood.

  2. Me being at home was the best decision for us too. Hands down. I went back to work for 3 months, until we could get things financially in order for me to be home (son was a surprise and I never knew I wanted to be at home). I feel like I changed SO much when becoming a mom (feel free to see this post - - and can't imagine not being home now.

  3. Sadly, I had to go back to work a few weeks ago. Luckily, I love my job teaching Kindergarten, but all day, every day, I miss my sweet 16 week old baby girl! Don't feel bad at all about getting to stay home...some of us are very jealous of your situation! What a blessing to stay at home with such a cutie.

  4. It took me literally years to be okay with the idea that I wanted to stay at home with my daughter. I realized that it was a much longer lasting richer legacy to raise a good person than it was to have a career. Even now that my daughter is in fifth grade and almost 11, I realize it's more important than ever for me to be home for her. And the flexibility of free lancing my way through life cannot be beat.

    Good for you.

  5. I dream that someday I'll be in the position to make this choice if I become a mother. So really, that's two dreams - having a child and staying home for at least the first few years of that child's life (and never returning to corporate/cubicle life again, no matter what eventual work I choose). I'm glad it is working for your family. :)