I've just recently completed the first few months back at full-time work. I have been a stay at home mom for ELEVEN years. I first want to say that I don't regret those years at home at all. I'm grateful that I was able to do that. Many families have circumstances that require both parents to work, but if you have the flexibility to stay home during the little years, I would be your biggest cheerleader in making that happen. My first encouragement to moms is to pull back those finances, make some large sacrifices, and give it a go, if it is at all possible!
However, for those of us that find ourselves working full-time and mommying full time, I will share some lessons learned most recently.
- Share the load. You are surrounded by capable people called kids. Put them to work! No matter the age of your children, if they are 2 years and older, they can help you get things done. Check out this list for ideas on how to get kids helping!
- Be ok with letting some things go. I'm a better mom when I choose wisely. I cannot do everything for my family and work full-time. It's ok to say no to some birthday parties because that is one less gift to buy and place to drive a kid. It is ok to simplify dinner and not feel the need to make something Pinterest worthy! Five ingredients or less will get the job done and slice some apples up as a side. DONE! Look for ways you may be trying to "keep up" but it's not needed and let yourself off the hook.
- Use your travel time home to prepare yourself for the role switch. You are transitioning from co-worker and employee to wife and mom and that doesn't come easily. I like to tell myself ALL the way home, "They had harder days than me!" This helps me enter my house ready to love my family well and meet their needs rather than having a victim mentality.
- Protect the weekends! Because working moms have very little quiet / alone time during the week, those weekends need to count! Don't over travel or fill your weekends with plans. You need quiet, restful weekends spent in God's word and with family.
All moms have different stories, are walking in different seasons, and find themselves navigating all sorts of changes. I’m hopeful that these four things will encourage those that find themselves in a similar place to me right now.