Wednesday, December 21, 2005

Quality of Life Continued....

Thank you readers for your comments on the last article. You are right though, there are some challenges to my new career that I didn't anticipate, or at least didn't think would bother me in the way they do. (see past articles on Staying Home Isn't What I Thought)

1. I feel like the stereo- typical stay at home mom that has nothing to offer conversationally at parties or at my husband work functions. Once someone asks me what I do, the conversation ends. No one wants to hear what my kids are doing these days (or I assume it's safe to say that since no one finds your kids as cute as you do, they don't want to hear details) I realize I should say, "oh, I'm the famous stuntmom that you all know and love"... but I don't. So I do find this hard since I loved talking about my job before I left. It was exciting and challenging and something new everyday. Sure, a lot of this is self imposed "boringness"- not many people want to hear what I've been reading, or what my views are on the war, they just want to know my earning potential.

2. I worry that I might not be setting a great example for my girl's career choices. What if they think being a woman is choosing the right husband- one that can provide financially? Not contributing to the bottom line of our bank account has altered my feeling of empowerment and self confidence. Hopefully this will change when I go back into the work force one day and my girls will be able to see the importance of a career and the need to put your family first. Until then, they will have to rely on my stories of when I was working.

3. Finances- it's obvious, but it's hard going from never needing to balance a check book to suddenly watching every dime. I have to admit though, this part we really needed. It's good to take the time to appreciate what you have, then evaluate with such thought everything that you consider buying. With this I really hope to teach the girls- to avoid the material world since we don't spend much time consuming anymore. I'm an advocate of saying to children that "we don't need that", rather than we can't afford that. This way they understand the choice to consume vs. the need.

4. I don't like to clean the house and I'm not organized. These are two things that should be looked into before quitting your job. While I was working I really thought my husband and I tried as best as possible to split the chores 50/50. With staying at home, I really feel like I need to do 95% of the housework now. I'm not too fond of this. Housework doesn't stop at 6:00- the typical end of the work day. So I feel like my days are a lot longer (although stress free for the most part).

Hopefully this is a more realistic view for my RTR friend. I feel like I was caught putting a positive spin on this choice I've made. Thanks and keep reading.


Anonymous said...

Really, Stuntmom? Well, I've got some questions, with numbers corresponding to the numbers in your article...

1. Isn't party chit chat always a bit of a challenge, regardless of whether you have a "job" or not? Honestly, I could never figure out quite what you did at your job because I don't ever remember you discussing any details... and is it that much more exciting to hear about someone's job than their kids? I've been bored to death at parties by someone going on about their work. And heaven forbid that a bunch of people who work together get together at a party! Anyone who is not part of the group is usually shut out or the ensuing coversation. Think of all the interesting issues that you have brought up on Stuntmom. Find the right person at a party and this is great material. I was at a conference recently with an old friend from a previous job that I happened to run into while there. He's a little crazy, so we were having a crazy conversation. An MD who I had met recently joined us. My first thought was "Oh boy. These two will be like oil and water. And if I keep up this conversation, Mr. MD is going to think I'm crazy, too!" After all, at conferences, one is supposed to talk about professional stuff. Well, lo and behold, he joined right in on our crazy conversation. We all ate dinner together and the rest of the table was fascinated and joined in, too. It was the most fun I had ever had at a conference. So, I guess what I'm trying to get at is that I think your job doesn't make you interesting, your brain does.

2. To me, this just sounds like a little psychosis setting in. And granted, we all have our areas of psychosis. I don't see how taking time off work to raise kids could translate to "the right husband is one that can provide financially." The message that I think it sends, which you brought up earlier, is "money is just not that important." And are you really regaling your daughters with stories of your days as a career woman? Do they request specific tales, like "the day mommy saved gatorade?" :)

3 and 4. I can relate to both of these.

Thanks for sharing all of these thoughts, and giving others of us a chance to reflect as well. It's a really interesting presentation, which points out how challenging it is just to distinguish truth from the little voices that we hear. And makes me revisit the thought that try as we may to explain ourselves, our actions speak the loudest.

StuntMom said...

Wow thanks for the comments. You brought up some really good points. You are right about the work party conversations. Maybe it is just my crazy inner voice that makes me question my choice to stay home. Again, you are right, I have never shared work stories with my good friends or children, so why would this be different now that I don't have a job? Thanks for challenging part two of the quality of life!