Wednesday, June 13, 2007

It's my choice and ...am happy with it.

This post is by Trishna of Tina Says


I have been meaning to write on a particular issue for quite some time.... something I read on a friend's blog..got me all charged up.... I just had to write after that....
The issue is about Stay at Home Moms and Working Moms.....I have been reading a lot on these topics lately and also sitting in on conversations and discussions....
I have worked non stop for 4 years ... and now since I have been pregnant with Joy I have been a SAHM.....I stopped work in October 2005...actually even before I conceived Joy.. it wasn't planned .. it just happened... We had just moved and I was settling in to a new city and the month I started circulating my resume and scheduling meetings ..was also when I realised I was pregnant ..... hence work went onto a back burner coz I just felt it wouldn't be ethical to join a place and then go on maternity leave....( actually who would appoint a pregnant woman anyways....)
Ok.. to get back to the main topic... I now am home with Joy.... I enjoy my time with him... but I also enjoyed my time at work... I teach and so my work anyways entails interaction with children.....
The husband knows this and realises that even though I am enjoying my stint at home ... I am also looking forward to going back to work....I keep reading about how moms are "sacrificing their lives " for their kids when they stay at home.....and also the flip side.. of how there are moms who feel guilty leaving their kids and going back to work.....Everyone seems to be justifying their actions... Why? If you are a SAHM .... you have chosen to be one.... If you are a working mom ... its coz you have chosen to be one... be it for some compulsions ... or whatever..... !!!!Why does one need to justify their actions.... ? As long as the decision you have taken is yours and by yours I mean a family decision... no one needs to be given any reasons for it....
The husband and I from day one ..have known .. that I would go back to work in a year or so after our baby was born... not for financial reasons.... (thank god.... for that....) it has never been a concern..we make do with what we have ... The husband and I have been sensible with our finances... Yes... we do splurge.. pretty often that too...but thats cos we want to....we both love food ... we love travelling and don't compromise on our budgets for that....we both love the good life....but we also know what we can do and what we cant.... for eg : we bought a small car... not coz we couldn't afford a big one.. but cos... we didnt need one at that point...we will now buy a bigger car... cos we need it... with a baby and his paraphenelia as well with me going back to work....its a necessity...
I will go back to work for myself.....I can hear people saying .."How selfish!!" Fine , think what you want to....It's my decision and I don't care what others think.....I love my son... and I don't feel that by going back to work my love for him will become less or that by spending every hour with him will make him realise how much I love him.... I am sure he will love me and I him even if I went to work for 5-6 hours a day.... Someone said.. it was all ok for me .. as the work I did was just for half a day and not like others who have full 9-5 jobs... well.... it doesn't matter how many hours I work.... or stay at home.. as long as I can ensure that my child is in safe hands and happy ,I am fine....
My mom worked through out our childhood and still does...and I am glad she does..... I am sure I would have been glad even if she didn't.... It is completely her decision..We never had problems with her working.... I sometimes .. hear my friends complain that they never saw their moms and that they were looked after by the servants...Well.. my brother and I have always seen Mom going to work...but she was always there when we needed her....even if she wasn't there physically she could be contacted when ever required.. we too were left with servants... they were more like family members for us... some of them are still with the family and are actually looking after the next generation ..as in our kids now....
Another friend told me .. that by staying home .. she was ensuring that she would be there to watch her child take her first step.. or say her first words...I am home right now and Joy has started saying a few things... and let me tell you ... they have always been in front of someone else... when I have either gone to the loo or am on the phone....the first time he crawled was while we were on vacation...So I guess its the way you look at things.....
If going to work is making me happy then in some way or the other it will make my child happy as well.... I have never come back from work in a bad mood... in fact I have always come home very very satisfied and rejuvenated.... and I think Joy will want a Mom who is in a good mood... and not a grouchy and irritable one .. like I am sometimes.. after a trying day with him....or after supervising the laundry and the cooking and the cleaning......I have delegated all these tasks now.. so that they are all taken care off to my satisfaction and am very happy....
This brings me to another conversation I had with a few friends.... on how their husbands had put their careers on a slower pace just so that they could be with their kids for everything.... This is one thing which is very personal.....The husband loves his job..... he too comes home after a full day of work... looking forward to the time he will spend with his wife and son.... His work makes him travel often....and I have never tried to put a stop to it .... if thats what his work entails ..then he has to travel....If his work makes him move cities ...then we will move with him till it becomes difficult...... before we got married ... I decided to change careers and chose to teach so that I could move with him whenever required.. I have never cribbed about what I had to do.. it was my decision....and am happy with it...
One of the reasons , we work is also to provide for a better future for our children... provide them with some kind of security ..our parents gave that security to us....made us stand on our own feet and then let us be..... we aim to try to do at least that.I am always being told that the love and affection that a child gets from a mom who is home all the time is different... how so?It's the way each of us perceive our roles as parents.... it's the way we want to bring up our child... it's our decision.....and that is that...!!!
The bottom line is that .... Its a personal choice.... to each their own.....you have made a choice ..be positive about that choice if its what you think is the best choice...
why the slanging match ?
and why the comparison ?
and why the debate?

3 comments:

Asha said...

Phew!!! Hope a big burden is off of your shoulder now.Aren't you glad we have DMC to vent?! ;D
I agree with you.I worked for a short time after the marriage and before kids.Now I stay at home by my choice and thank God for my husband's good earnings,I can easily afford to.
I am a perfectionist by nature which makes me give 100% to whatever I am doing.I must say I never missed working outside and enjoy being a wife and mother.I manage practically EVERYTHING except the yard work!!;D
NEVER regretted one day that I don't "work" outside but ppl have either been jealous or hint at for "not contributing"!! I always laugh it off!
Are they kidding?! I have 2 kids completely dependent on me,Arvind is a very busy doctor! I wouldn't have my life any other way,I love being at home.If I ever have felt that I should work outside,I would get a job in a heartbeat.
Glad you know what you want and if you feel in your heart what you are doing is right,then you should do it and be happy with your decision.Don't let others decide it for you.Kids need happy mothers to be happy themselves,not frustrated and resentful mommies!:))
Enjoy wherever you are.Hugs.

Sandeepa said...

Its really good that at least you have no doubts about it...thats the best part.
Most of us always feel "Grass is greener on the other side".

But I do think that if both parents are in a demanding job outside home, and delegating tasks like laundry, cooking etc. is NOT possible as in the US then life does tend to get hectic.

I know people who pick up kids from daycare at 7:00 in the evening because that is how their work hours + commute is and that I feel is sad. You are a child only once and what joy it is to spend 12 hours of those precious days in a daycare.

So it DOES matter that you have a work which allows you to enjoy the beenfits of working and also gives you enough time to be with your son.

But the end of it is being happy in ones own choice

Dee said...

very good piece! I usually don't get affected by these debates because my choice is mine and nobody can put themselves in my way of thinking. As Asha said, kids need happy mothers and a happy and healthy environment. If we can provide that then everything else is a bonus. I never find a need to assert my decisions or judgements to anybody but myself and my immediate family...Be at peace with whatever you decide coz life is honestly too short to be trying to reason out to ppl that don't matter in the real deal!
ENJOY :)