Tuesday, May 22, 2012

And in the Evening She's a Singer With the Band

Elliott tells me that if he were a stay-at-home-mother, he would have no inhibition about doing just what he wanted without feeling the need to "prove something" to people. Meaning, if he wanted to visit art and history museums regularly because it was something he's passionate about (it's not, really) he would. If he wanted to take a language or fine arts class of some sort, he would. If he wanted to go to culinary school to develop strong cooking skills (we talk about this one for me quite a bit just for a funny), he would. If he wanted to volunteer his time somewhere, he would.

 I've discussed this previously on here; Education and hobby development do not have to be in pursuit of a degree, career, or end goal. Learning to garden and cultivate the Earth, painting and designing a home, reading, and exercising or training for a marathon can be productive and worthwhile uses of time with lifelong learning implications.

I struggle with this, that's why I blog about it so "self-assuredly" and "matter-of-factly" (and so often). I want to read my words over again and remember them and believe them.

 I think I have this self-defeating fear of being "lesser" than my husband because I believe in my competence as a student and potential professional in the workforce yet he will be the primary one assuming that role. A few weeks back at school, my cohort was discussing, as a group, scheduling times for us to counsel clients next semester. I disagreed with their proposed method of deciding who schedules on what days and a girl (woman?) turned to me and said, "That's not... practical... for the people who have JOBS." I scoffed at it (being the high-strung, Type A, young, confident mother I am) and went about my merry adamant ways.  It's not so much as a knock to my self-worth but rather a pet-peeve that yet another person views mothers as "lesser" unless they have a career to boot. I despise that, actually. I don't like that many other stay-at-home mothers I know feel that way about themselves and I especially don't like that I have moments of weakness in which I feel that way about myself. My husband doesn't make me feel that way, and I wonder if that's rare--hopefully not. He tells me the sky's the limit and that he will let me do whatever my heart wants and will love. NOT what I think I "need"--apart from being a stay-at-home-mother. I admire the mothers who are able to so gracefully balance work and home, who work from home, who turn pastimes into successful enterprises, and who do what they want, do what they love, and do it without feeling a void for more gratification from the illustrious "outside."     

Beckett playing with Weeble Wobbles while we sign documents for our new house--we're moving this week!


Grammy Suzzy said...

Alisa...I so admire that you have taken the opportunity, while your boys are still young, to make sure you have an education. In a few short years, no matter what others may think, your days will be filled with soccer practices, homework, cupcakes for parties, chorus and band practices: the things you do so your children can have choices, to try things, just as Elliot does. I didn't make sure I had an education. I loved every single moment of raising my six...being the backstage dresser at the dance recitals, the team mom, the homeroom parent, the journalism driver... However, my last one is away on a mission. I find my days empty...the resume as well. I think, however, I will follow Elliot's inspiration. I have sought educational opportunities, but have been discouraged by the vastness of the courses I must take, and the financial implications of such an undertaking. BUT, just one class...or two. Volunteering...Great ideas. I know being a stay at home mom is something very few will understand, but you yourself will feel the great value in all that you do...when they hit the ball, at their first band concert, with their first published photo, and when they walk across that stage and get their diploma. No one understands what you feel...but YOU will feel it...and that is all that matters!

Melissa K said...

WOAH!!!!! I swear I just had a breakdown the other night for hours trying to communicate this VERY idea to Aaron! All I needed to do was call you!! Every word you wrote, I can agree and relate to.

Sara said...

I think that no matter what you are doing, career or SAHM, we should stop second guessing our decisions. I think a lot of moms that work outside the home, have guilt about not being able to be home and do all the things they would like to do. The truth is every situation is unique and to find joy and peace wherever you are at in life. We all want validation that we ate doing a good job at whatever we have to do, and some of the negativity comes out because of insecurity.

miss chaz. said...

You are a super mom! Such great thoughts....So many can relate!

p.s. happy late anniversary !!

p.s.s. I need to see that new house and new baby !!!