"Wait... So you're just going to give up your career to STAY HOME? But you're successful! And you went to college for 4 years. You studied hard for your license and internships to get to where you are now. How could you just throw it all away?"
If you're a SAHM who has decided to stay home with your children, you've more than likely heard something similar to the above statement. Probably more than once. And maybe even from your closest family and friends.
I used to be a working mom
In my previous life, I was a pediatric Registered Nurse. Without giving too much away about my personal life, I worked in critical care for 2 years and in a specialty for 5 years. I worked hard and had a good thing going for myself.
The birth of my first child came at a time when I was the bread winner. My husband has a bachelors degree in computers but had a hard time finding a job when we were out of college. He was working part time and it wasn't feasible for me to stay home. With it not being an option, I didn't even think about it.
But looking back, it was incredibly hard for me to go back to work. I hate showing my emotions on the outside, so I know now I pushed it down deep inside and forgot about it.
Even when my husband was promoted to a full time position with an income we could live on without me working, I still pushed the feelings down because I was just going to be a working mom. And I was okay with that.
My mom was a working mom. Most of my friends had working moms. Most women I knew at the time were working moms. I had told myself I worked hard for this career and this is what I was going to do.
Then came Tiny Human #2
I got pregnant with Tiny Human #2 right before our first turned 2. Throughout the pregnancy, there wasn't much question about me returning to work. I was just going to. I had a good career and had worked hard to get to where I was.
But, I had complications with my pregnancy and had to be on modified bed rest starting at 26 weeks. I started using up my FMLA time really fast.
Tiny Human #2 was born and I was going to have to return to work right around 9 weeks. We already had a spot secured for him at the daycare Tiny Human #1 attended.
But I just couldn't do it
I was battling postpartum anxiety and the thought of leaving my 9 week old at daycare spun me into panic attacks. I did a lot of soul searching and praying leading up to that time. All the feelings I had pushed so far deep inside of me about staying home with my kids came erupting to the surface.
I couldn't do it. After sobbing hysterically while my toddler and newborn somehow managed to nap at the same time, I prayed asking God for guidance. For answers on what I should do.
In my heart at that moment, I knew I had been pushing away the notion of staying home ever since my husband got a job that would support us financially.
When I brought my revelation to my husband, I was met with a "well, duh" attitude. Lol. He told me he had known for a long time I should be staying home with our children.
So that was that
Not only did we feel lead for me to stay home with our kids, but I needed to work on and take care of me. Postpartum anxiety is no joke.
I turned in my resignation at work, said my goodbyes and have stayed home ever since. That was almost 2 years ago. But I'll also never forget the comments that come with leaving a profession to be a SAHM.
Yes, I "gave up" my career to stay home with my children
We've all heard it, probably more than once. The first few times were a little easier to ignore and move on from. Luckily, our families were always supportive so I didn't experience the negativity there like many SAHM's seem to.
Total strangers who would ask me in the checkout line at the grocery store if I stayed home and what I did before that were in total shock when I told them what my previous career was. I don't know about other professions, but apparently if you're a nurse who stays home, you've ruined your life. Or at least that's the vibe I've gotten.
But you know what? I still have my license. I still do my continuing education hours to renew and try to keep up with any advancements in the profession. As of right now, if all goes as well on the path we are on, I will continue to home school our children and stay home with them to do so. Our youngest isn't quite 2 yet and we may have more, so being out of the workforce could be a very long time.
I know things may change and I may have to return to work before we anticipate. But right now in this moment, I am home.