I decided to write this post not to pick a fight with my fellow mommies who work away from home, but to try to shed a light on some mommy matters I consider trivial, but very controversial.
Recently, there has been a buzz that somebody raised an argument that modern moms MUST get a job to be able to provide for the family and not just be contented on waiting for their husband's salary. At first, what I saw in that post was not the ridiculous character of the author, but the wrong usage of words and/or grammar. Hehe. I thought it was too embarrassing to rant and have said it in such a lousy way. I hoped that the person just wrote it in Filipino. Anyway, I was not affected at all; not until some mommy friends gave me their opinions on this. Says Camille of Lollies and Lipsticks, "iba-iba tayo ng household and the way we do things might not work with other people. Respect na lang, tutal being a housewife is a decision made not by moms alone. I believe our partners agreed..."
I felt that I needed to make other mommies aware, especially those who might be thinking the same way like the "assaulter", that our decision to be at home with our children doesn't mean we are just pigs waiting to be fed and bathed. Like what Vivian's (aka D of The Soshal Network) favorite quote by Jane Sellman said, "The phrase working mother is redundant." True. A mother works, regardless if she's at home taking care of the kids or away to earn extra money for the family.
We can't say that all modern women/wife/mother MUST get a job. The word must is like insinuating that those who stayed at home are the lesser persons they have been because they chose not to be career-oriented individuals. My personal life has been like an open book since I started this blog. But what most of you doesn't know is that I miss going to work. I miss dressing up, putting on make-up, wearing heels and speaking in front of an audience. I miss the feeling of being applauded after a day's seminar. I miss reading my trainees' positive (most of the time!) evaluation. I miss the appreciation because I've done my job well. I miss spending my own money. But those cannot be ever compared to waking up every.single.day beside my daughter; not even the appreciation part.
Why not try ask your children on what they actually need?
I did that to my 4-year old when I was really having a tough day cleaning, washing clothes and prepping her up. That point made me want to leave the house, her and go back to job-hunting. Endless housework tortured me. I asked her, "you want Nanay to go back to work and leave you to a yaya?" My very innocent and frank daughter said "No Nay, I want you. Because Tatay is at the camp." Then there goes a lump in my throat, heavy breathing and when I hugged her, I wept. I realized that more than anyone else, it is I she needs. Her mother who carried her for 9 months, whom she shared air to breath and blood to live. Not a relative who may love her dearly but not as much as I can; and especially not a stranger who's just doing her job, who might actually do her bad when I'm not at home. I had that experience when LB told me her yaya slapped her face inside the CR because she refused to take a bath. I vowed that it will never happen again.
I chose to be with my daughter because I don't want her to grow up without a parent at home. Her father's already away and it gives her so much pain already whenever she misses him. I want to be my daughter's very first bestfriend, someone she can talk to anytime about anything.
I'm sure other mommies have their own choices, too. Like what my sister Nicole said, "Oh well, I am one domesticated career woman. If I become very wealthy, I'll stop working and be a stay at home mom, priceless! Iba-iba tau. My mother showed me both and I'd like to do both."
When I asked about other mommies' reactions on this controversial issue, the first I got was a laugh. It's like a laugh of security and bliss. This sealed the fact that this issue is really as lame as the one who authored it. Says Mommy Pehpot of Make or Break, "bwahahahaha" Sorry mommas, that's what she really said. Lol. And another funny comment I got was from my good friend, fellow SAHM and Army wife, Chique, "Ang masasabi ko lang masarap tumunganga maghapon at maghintay ng grasya! Hahahaha!" Of course, she was joking. She's an erstwhile Chemist, mind you.
Moms are the ones responsible of teaching the kids what real happiness is. Say, if you've been giving them more material things than spending quality time with them, that could be their basis of love. Or that's where they could draw happiness from. Like what my MIL used to do when she was not retired yet and we were still living with her. She used to always bring home pasalubong to LB that when she forgets to give one, LB gets really mad and refuses to talk to her. It's the same effect of showering your child with material bliss rather than attention, genuine love and time.
Now it changed when we moved out and I became a full-time mom and wife. My daughter has become more appreciative of little things around her because not everything were given to her as she pleases. And that her father's homecoming is her absolute happiness. Well, aside from watching My Little Pony in YouTube. ;)
Here's a real deal-breaker. If only I could leave my daughter to someone I can trust, I might have gone back to work. I finished college anyway. I was a Dean's Lister. I was an ace employee. I had so much drive to do the best. I wanted to be the woman my daughter would like to be someday. But I'm not someone who could trust anyone easily anymore. Anyone can be a bad guy. And I thought that if I'd go back to work just because I feel that my college degree has been put to waste now that I'm at home, that means I'm doing my job for myself and not for my child's future.
To moms who work away from home to help their husbands earn more for the family in securing your children's future, I salute you for the courage in leaving them to a nanny or a relative. I can never do that again, unless I really need to go back to work because my husband has lost his job; which at this point will not happen because he is a very hardworking man. To moms whose goal is to give a comfortable life for their family because that's what they think parents should do, continue doing it for your children and not because that's what the society tells you to.
I hope the battle of words between SAHMs and career moms will soon be over. We should not be fighting for the crown of being the perfect mother; because we're not being a good example to our kids (especially to our daughters) if we will continue to dis one another. It's as if we're making motherhood such a big task. Motherhood can sometimes be tough but it's a blessing. We don't want them to choose dogs over kids in the future, right? Or is it fine with you?
Whatever we are doing for our children right now,
let's do it for them because we love them.
As for me, I'm dreaming of having a freelance work, which won't eat up much of my time so I can still do some housework, go out on dates with my husband, take care of my princess, travel with them and have some money for a little shopping. I don't want to get a job with a very minimal salary then hire a nanny and feed her; that will leave me with nothing to spend, actually. For now, I'm a stay-at-home mom who blogs and so PROUD OF IT.
How about you, queen? Please share what you think about this.