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Thursday, August 28, 2014

Oh, you're a stay at home mom?

A year ago this past Tuesday I quit my job. 

I worked for a Pharmaceutical packaging company for just over 5 years when Chris and I made the biggest decision I've had to make. I've worked a job since I was 13. Everything from pushing carts and bagging groceries, to waitress, to babysitting, to retail, to Beer Rep, to copier sales, to Pharma and so much more in between. I never took breaks for school or summer, I always had something lined up. I once went a 2 week period with no job and I was crazy. I need to be kept busy. I literally was reorganizing the refridgerator every day and making everyone crazy. 

I got pregnant on our honeymoon Unexpectantly. I wouldn't want it any other way looking back on it but at the time it was a bit of a panic - holy cow now what do we do. We are planners and this set us into a frantic financial freak out. We also both worked crazy crazy hours. 

Chris works from how but travels often and works more 10-12 hour days than 8 hour ones. I had just finished a year as a sales manager at my Pharma company and was managing 12 people which took up a ton of my time and often required me to work 12 hour days and weekends not to mention my commute that was an hour plus out of the city. 

As time went by and I got bigger we still had no child care plan. The day cares in the suburbs were a fortune and the ones in the city made us nervous (and still weren't all that affordable). We had just started looking into home child care when my company started to restructure. I was given an opportunity to double my staff and add another tier below me. This was huge for me. I worked so hard to get where I was and as much as I wasn't happy with where my company was heading this was too good to be true that I was finally becoming the Woman in Management in a corporate workspace that I was told all my college career could never happen..... And that's when Chris and I started talking about me staying home being the best option.

I had issues with my pregnancy and became ridiculously protective and head over heels in love with this little lady growing inside. Financially me staying home made the most sense since day are would cost almost as much as I was making once travel costs were included. Timing wise I knew that if I continued to work I would end up seeing Sophie 1-2 hours max per day during the week. That thought made me want to throw up. Chris and I discussed how we plus really have no way of picking her up or dropping her off at day care on the days where put schedules conflicted, after all there were some days where we already weren't seeing much of each other. 

No decisions were made and then Sophie arrived. I never wanted to leave her. I instantly was willing to give up everything I worked so hard to get in the working world. Sometimes pride just isn't even comparative to the pride you have in your children. 

It was hard to leave my company, my work friends, and the money that I know I may never earn like that again. It's hard not having expendable income, it's hard not talking to adults everyday, it's hard not just buying whatever I want with out scrounging for coupons and sales. But I've never been materialistic or cared about name brands so it really isn't all that bad. I had my fun and now it's just a different kind of fun. 

I've noticed there's this ridiculous Stepford housewives stigma around being a stay at home mom that when I tell people I automatically feel like I'm being judged. This isn't easy. You don't know me. You don't know what I've given up and what I continue to give up everyday. I'm not having lemonade in pitchers on my porch while my child colors quietly with her crayons. I'm not wearing dresses, curling my hair and doing my makeup just so everyday and going to museums together. I'm in sweatpants from college and haven't bought myself anything since maternity clothes. My girl is crazy hyper and I take her to the free sprinkler park as much as possible to try and tire her out so she will take a nap through my husbands conference call that you can hear throughout our echoing tiny house. I'm trying to come up with ideas on how to create, innovate and sell all while watching my tiny hyper tot so that I can have some extra cash to be able to buy her cute clothes and toys. Don't judge  me. Everyone has a story. 

I love every single day waking up with Sophie and watching her grow. I'd give it all up again over and over for her. She's the only thing I need anymore. This is the best job I've ever had and ever will.