Motherhood is never a small responsibility. It’s HUGE! The weight of those responsibilities are immeasurable. All eyes are on you to say the least. No one chooses to be a mother. It comes unexpectedly in a life of a woman and is a pure blessing from up above. It is our role as mothers to nurture the gifts of motherhood and take care of God’s priced creations. But at the course of doing so, mothers do tend to forget themselves and what they deserve because they are more preoccupied with the needs of people around her and in the process she forgets what she desires and long for herself.
Like all others, mothers are humans too. They have certain needs, boundaries, limitations and personal aspirations in life that need to be addressed too. Mothers are also dreamers. They have prepared themselves to conquer the world at their early stage and have plans on what to pursue in the future. But all these changes for her once the reality of motherhood enters the scene. Sacrifices are needed in order for the people around her to live their life. Sacrifices that mothers need to bear for a while or for a lifetime in order for her love ones to make it in life. Sacrifices made in silence in order for her family to never lose hope. Probably this is the way mothers are built.
I speak for myself now because I experienced a big shift in life when I became a mom. We mothers do suffer in silence and we give up a LOT! You might agree with me on these:Sudden career change is a 360 degree change. I, for one, gave up my budding career 8 years ago. I left that last company where I feel I could stay up to my retirement days. I was doing so well and I know my mentors were also rooting for me to stay. Giving up that early was the last thing that came up to my mind when I had a child. I had no choice, I had to leave because no one can take care of my child for me. And in leaving, I had to lose my benefits too. Medical insurance, bonuses, social security, free use of the gym, access pass in tollways and chances for promotions. I can see all my colleagues making it big while there I was being left with a decision to shift the role. It was the hardest decision I made in life. And this decision also makes it harder for me to come back or re-enter the workforce again if ever I am ready to do so.
- Less “ME” time is inevitable. Less or almost to none. This comes abruptly to stay home moms. No one’s else left at home so there’s no one to turn too if you need to do something while some of the chores are still brewing. Mothers are time managers. She manages her time well so she can do more. But let’s face it moms, there’s really a lot to work on in the house and almost no time for rest. Shower time becomes shorter. TV time comes in between chores. Going to the mall alone never happens anymore. It’s a reality for stay home moms.
- No more time for friends. I get a lot of invites for dinner with friends early on (that’s before having children) and I do come even if the place is too far from my place. I will make sure I make it. For me that’s a time to relax and catch up with long-time-no-see friends. Until it became harder and harder to say yes to these invitations since most of the dinners are either Friday nights or weekends. When you have family, weekends become family bonding now. Since for one whole week you don’t get to see your kids due to school days and your husband since he needs to go to the office. So instead of having fun with friends, the night outs or dine outs with the family is a must.
- Social isolation starts to take place. Yes and it starts when you see your friends less and less. Stay home moms become content being alone and make adjustments. Your children get to see their friends in school and have someone to chit-chat with. Your husband can still manage to talk to his co-workers during office hours and even joke around during their meal breaks while you are happy and at ease just being alone and do everything unnoticed. I love music so I do open my Spotify once in a while. No, everyday! Music fills the house and it soothes me. Thanks to the power of the Internet too for it offers alternatives. I have Facebook, too! I find enjoyment now from the benefits of social media and not from physical and social interaction outside of home.
- Limitation to earn for herself and the family. Needless to say, stay home moms have limitations when it comes to earning from home. Limitations not in terms of the capacity to think of ways on how to earn because there are limitless opportunities and ways today. But limitation in terms of time restrictions, mobility and number of children to divide your energies. 1) time restrictions – The kids are always with you especially if you are nurturing infants. The baby needs utmost attention more than the house chores itself. Then we have toddlers who cling in our midst and loves to race around the house. Same goes if we have preschoolers who need same attention as the others. Your time with the kids consumes you everyday. 2) mobility – To freely move or to go places if the business and opportunity needs it. Let’s be real. If we are stay-at-home moms, the only way to earn even how little it is, is also from home. Online selling is now a trend. But even that requires you to go out and that suggests that you need to really manage your time very well otherwise one work will suffer. You just got to choose which work you need to sacrifice to fulfill the other. Happens to me all the time. 3) number of children to divide your energy – It’s simple math. If you have two kids then your work as mother doubles. Children have different needs too. We also apply different approaches on how we deal with them. Therefore, your work doubles or triples.
- Dealing with burnout & other health issues silently. Stay home moms are always alone but it doesn’t follow that she is lonely. Alone but not lonely. The fact that she has a lot of things to do around and a lot of decision-making to do in a day makes her a very busy woman not to mention the physical exhaustion and stress that she gets from them. The monotony of the works she deals by herself everyday make her vulnerable to burnout due to the tedious repetition of her routines everyday. It gives her less interests on things she does as day passes by. Mothers may distance themselves and begin to feel numb about their work. Burnout is due to extreme stress or fatigue which eventually leads to physical and mental health problems. The truth is nobody notices it if someone is dealing with it. The person normally gets weak, loses interests, suffers stomach aches, headaches and even intestinal issues. That is why mothers need to put variety on her duties otherwise she gets same results over and over and that causes her loss of interests in what she does. Insert fun and diversions if it would help.
SAHMs are strong women. You may see them ok but try to check on them once in a while. I am still far from burning out because I make alterations on my daily routines. I may always be in the house most of the time but I have blogs to write and keep up, cooking show in YouTube, online selling pages, physical store to attend to, to add up to my daily chores in the house plus my KIDS! I am overbooked if I may say and that makes me so busy. But I always follow what my husband says every time he leaves for work. That in between chores and duties, “TAKE A BREAK”! It’s a must believe me. Mothers do need to re-charge their bodies so that extra energies will be put into good use at the end of the day.