Monday, March 7, 2011

My Life as An Acronym (SAHM)

When people ask you what you do, what do you say?
These days, I'm asked that pretty infrequently.
But I've noticed that even in my social circles, when I say that I'm a stay-at-home-mom (SAHM), I'm prompted by others to also share that I have my own business.  That I do more than "JUST" stay at home and raise kids.  It's kind of funny. 

I've been a SAHM for 6.5 years.

EJ as a 2 month old
Before my oldest was born, we were pretty certain that we were going to raise our kids with me in the home (Lord willing).  So far, (nearly seven years later!) that has worked out.

The first few months at home were absolutely the hardest.  Getting used to a new life, a new baby and being a mom was a huge adjustment for me.  I felt like I needed to be doing more.  Not that I would be more "valuable" as a person, but because I sort of had the thought, "this is IT?".  I was so used to going to work from 730-330 then running to school from 415-915 at night.
I was busy and I liked it that way.  Now, I was "stuck" inside because my new baby needed to nurse, sleep and get a diaper changed- A LOT.  And with every diaper change was a clothing change because my boy always soiled his clothes.

I was a little preoccupied with what else I could do while my baby was a baby.  God quickly showed me during this time in my life that my ministry was to my family. 

"Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it.  Unless the Lord guards the city, the watchman keeps awake in vain."  
                                                                    Psalm 127:1

How did I feel about this revelation?  Relieved!  I didn't have to search and wonder what else I could be doing.  I could focus my energy on being the best wife and mom that I could be.

After a few months, when this child was smiley and portable, life became more interesting and when I found out after 8 months of getting used to life as a mom that I was going to have ANOTHER baby, I freaked.  When EJ was 17 months old, I gave birth to my Miss and life was cuh-razy (er).  Two in diapers, a boy who could barely make it down the stairs alone and a newborn girl to take care of.
I'm sure that God was chuckling some days.  He does have a sense of humor, after all.
I love this picture... ;)
 The other night I was in a skin care store picking up my yearly supply.  The service girl and I started chatting.  I don't quite remember how it came up, but the fact that I'm a SAHM became the topic of conversation.

She went on and on about how I didn't look old enough to be a mom (oh go on!).  I was flattered.  Then she said how she'd love to be a SAHM because it would be so much easier (even though she doesn't currently have children, but that's beside the point).  She was trying to be nice?  The other sales girl rolled her eyes and said how BORING it would be.  She was trying to be-uh, mean?  If I weren't so mature (chuckle chuckle), I probably would have gone into a SAHM speech...  Maybe I would've brought up some of these points?  Maybe not.
Financially-super and I mean super tight.  I shop at 3 grocery stores a week.  We don't have cable (nor do I think we would if we had the $),  we only eat out on special occasions,  I shop around for  everything to find the best deal.
Emotionally and Spiritually-Hard. Essential to find other moms that you can do life with.  Otherwise, you will feel isolated.  I am so thankful for my church that offered and continue to offer a Wednesday morning study where many moms gather for study and fellowship while the kids are cared for in the nursery.  Or there are MOPS groups around the country.  If you aren't a part of a church during this part of your life, I HIGHLY recommend that you check one out.
Spending daily time in prayer became more essential to me these past years as well.  There's no way I could handle motherhood without laying my burdens at God's feet on a frequent basis.

As far as boring, being a mom is anything but.  My kids are now 6, 5 and almost 3.  Although it's true that I often feel like a bus-driver, watching them grow and learn is one of the most exciting things, ever.
My three babies in 2008

 To the stay at home moms whose husbands are out of town most of the week-I don't know how you do it.  Kids all day, kids all night.  Alone.  Amazing.  Only God could sustain that!
To the working mamas.  I don't know how you do it.  Working all day, then coming home and doing everything in the evening or weekend that takes me all week to do.   God bless you.

But we're not meant to wonder how other people do things.  We're meant to live the life that God gave us the way He wants us to.  And I'm so content in the life that I have right now that I don't feel a need to tell people that "oh, I have a business, too."  Being a mom is enough right now.  And I'll keep on doing it at home until God directs us otherwise!

"Train up a child in the way he should go, even when he is old he will not depart from it."  
Proverbs 22:6


  1. Tina,

    I like this post alot, because it is true. I have worked for most of the time that I have had kids (and mine are 10 & 11), and since I more recently have not, it never seems to be enough that you are a stay-at-home mom. That is often even the case in my own home, but even during something as simple as a dentist appointment the other day, I am questioned as to "what I do." It never seems sufficient to say that I am a homemaker. There always seems to be a sense of disappointment-- "oh, that's nice." Everyone thinks you sit at home and eat bon-bons all day and watch novellas (soap operas). I think you are proof that is far from the truth.


  2. Being a SAHM is hard work! I have my good days and my more frustrating days. A hug, kiss, or an "I love you, Mom!" can turn any frustrating day around. I'm so thankful for the opportunity I have to be home with my kids. It's a blessing!

  3. I was just sweeping the kitchen floor and (after finding myself doing a little grumbling) started choosing to thank the Lord for the blessing of being able to stay at home and sweep the floor. Thankful I didn't have to do that after a long day of working outside the home! Thankful that this is the job I have right now. =) Thanks for the reminder!

  4. Tina, thanks so much for the encouragement. And for the great EWACH verses too. We all have those days that are difficult, but I'm so thankful to be a SAHM; like you, I don't know how working moms do it all. I'm so grateful that we worship the Lord of Lords who gives us only what we can handle in each situation. We are truly blessed.

  5. So young and so wise!

    The grass is always greener over on the other side. We're dealt the life God wants us to have. How we deal with it, that's our choice. A wonderful husband, three amazing little princesses, a nutty dog and of course supportive family and friends makes my journey much richer. I wouldn't trade it for the world! Many days the only world I can relate to is CRAZY, but when I take a deep breath and look at all my blessings I am in awe.

    Back to grading papers (Diagramming sentences - when will my students ever use this dying art?????)

  6. Thanks so much for sharing, Beth!
    So wonderful to see how thankful you are for what God has given you.
    As for diagramming sentences... What's a sentence?

  7. Tina, I love this post! Thank you so much for sharing your heart so beautifully, non-defensively, and joyfully!!!

    I have been talking/teaching/writing/thinking about the same topics lately. Do you remember me saying I would never even have kids? Man, God had to rewire my whole heart and mind. I just didn't value what He values. At all.

    There are a lot of books out there about these topics, but most of them just made me mad. Until I read "Choices" by Mary Farrar. You may have seen me posting about it on I said, I'm on a kick. Anyway, I would recommend it to every woman, but especially moms. I think you'd love it. :)

  8. With my oldest two boys I stayed home with them and went back to work teaching when my youngest was 3 not knowing that I would have another baby the following year. I truly have the best of both worlds. My babysitter for my baby watches my baby boy at my house right next door to the school so I can walk down and see him during the day on my breaks. Last year I was able to be my son's kindergarten teacher and next year will be my middle son's kindergarten teacher. During the day I get to see my boys and love on them, PLUS my husband works at the church and his office is upstairs so I get to see him throughout the day as well. While it is hard being a working mom right now, I couldn't ask for a better situation because I am still surrounded by my family!


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