A girlfriend of mine brought up an interesting subject yesterday. See, there was some hoopla in an online community we frequent about who works harder: the stay-at-home mom or the working mom. An argument as old as time. Well, as old as the 70's maybe. I'm not going to get into that, except to say that I've found staying at home infinitely harder and more mentally and emotionally taxing than working at a paying job outside the home. Dude, not one of my co-workers ever pooped their pants, picked their noses or melted into a puddle when someone told them they couldn't have a cookie. Well, at least, not when I was around. I can think of a few who might have indulged in a little PIP (pick in private) but I never did witness it myself.
Anyway, my friend Cheryl was curious about the kinds of sacrifices we make as mothers. Not specifically as working mothers or stay-at-home mothers. Just mothers. I have to admit, I whipped out that list of sacrifices in a New York minute and had to work a leeeettle longer on the perks. But that could be a by-product of my current mental state. (Did you know that the sound of a whining child actually reaches out and zaps a mother's brain cells? No, I swear! And if the whiner is jumping up and down you lose that precious grey matter at almost twice the speed! It's true, yo. Look it up.)
So here's what I came up with. Feel free to add to my lists as you see fit. I'll probably come back and add to it myself here and there.
- Music with bad words in it
- Smooth skin (hello stretch marks and Madame Crow's Feet!)
- Nice clothes
- I have to eat a snack in the closet if I don't want to share it. hee.
- Fun car (not that I had one before, you understand)
- Adult conversation. Oh how I miss grown-ups!
- An 8-hour vacay outside my home every day
- Sex in the kitchen, sex in the front room, sex in the car, sex in the yard. You get the idea. No more 100% spontaneous sex. Darned if these kids aren't around all. the. time.
- Along the same line - noisy sex. 'Nuff said.
- Vacations, spa days, pedicures, cigarettes
- TV shows that don't feature the alphabet or the Number of the Day
- Bras that don't have flappy-flaps
- Drinks and appetizers with friends any old night I feel like it
- Not having to repeat myself. Over and over. And over. And overandoverandover. I detest repeating myself.
- Hop on a plane and meet you in Vegas this weekend? Suuuuuuure!
Benefits? Oh yeah!
- Being there to cuddle the babies in the mornings
- Being available for Love Bank Deposits whenever someone needs a snuggle on the couch. Jonah's my "every 1/2 hour hug" guy.
- Never missing a milestone
- Knowing my kids trust me to "fix it" - whatever "it" may be
- Doing school in our "jajamas"
- Being able to sit on the floor and nurse an ouchie for as long as it takes
- Knowing Ashley loves nothing more than the smell of something baking when she gets home from school, and I love being there to do it
- Getting dressed & foofy for no reason
- Not getting dressed & foofy if I don't feel like it
- Bra and deodorant optional until 5pm
- Lunch with friends once in a while
- Being available for things like MOPS and homeschool activities
- Having my twin nephews over on Tuesdays and Fridays so my kids and their cousins will grow up bestest friends. I didn't have that.
- Teaching moments happen aaaaaaall day long
- Knowing that I probably could fix that broken outlet but I don't have to because Dan will do it.
- Having the enormous opportunity to instill in my children the knowledge of the unconditional love of God and their parents, the importance of family loyalty and unity, the responsibility of being self-reliant when the time comes, the knowledge that they're entitled to nothing in this world that they don't work hard to achieve, and the assurance that they have our full support in achieving it.