When people find out I am a Stay at Home Mom (SAHM), I sometimes hear responses such as these:
- So, do you work?
- What do you do all day?
- Do you get bored?
- Do you ever wish you could go back to work?
Although often under appreciated, SAHMs are a staple to our society. Yes, there are times where I wish that I had a job where I could receive a raise, or recognition, even a paycheck. The work you am doing as a mom will have far more lasting results than any career you could ever have. When you view your mothering role more as a job or career, you will find more success and fulfillment.
I LOVE looking up the monetary “worth” of a stay at home mom each year. Here is the info graphic from 2016:
Not too shabby, huh? The value of a stay at home mom keeps going up over the years (I’m not convinced that is only because of inflation either).
So, let’s talk about some of these skills here and how you can get ‘more ahead’ in your career as a SAHM.
I love that the title changed from regular old housekeeper and cook to ‘Executive Housekeeper’ and ‘Executive Chef’. As I have mentioned before, I take my job as an Executive Housekeeper seriously. Staying on top of the housework alone could be a full-time job! Keeping the house clean and teaching your children to do so develops skills of cleanliness and order.
Moms may not love cooking for picky palates but as a Chef, wouldn’t you be looking for reviews and taste testers? I am more inclined to try new recipes and improve upon our meals if I am a Chef, rather than a pull-frozen-burritos-out-of-the-freezer cook.
Facilities Manager/Plumber/Janitor/Maintenance Supervisor/Groundskeeper:
While my husband is gone at work, I can’t call him to plunge a toilet, unclog a sink, or fix the various things that seem to constantly go broken. Learn the skills, acquire the supplies, and most important: don’t underestimate the power of YouTube. I swear you can learn anything from YouTube.
Teaching and then supervising all the various chores that the kids do takes a LONG TIME up front, but the end result I’m sure will be oh so rewarding. Some days it would be easier to just clean the bathrooms yourself, but when the kids clean them right, it’s amazing.
You could easily hire someone to mow the lawn, weed the yard, plant and harvest the garden, but think of the money you save by doing it yourself. Life-long lessons of work and law of the harvest can be taught to the kids, as well as an appreciation for nature.
The health and well-being of a family depends largely on the mom. Sick kids? There are days when I wish I could call in sick on this one. Dragging multiple kids to the Doctor is no fun. Home remedies come in handy until a Doctor’s visit is absolutely necessary.
The best way to keep your family healthy is through those delicious whole foods. Trying to juggle who has eaten what and how much can be overwhelming. Making sure everyone has fair portion sizes is just as tough as balancing the ‘finish your plate’ vs. ‘listen to your body’ psychology.
And speaking of psychology, plan on the hours and hours you will spend listening to school and friend drama. Working through sibling arguments and disagreements are right up there with the drama too.
Day Care Center Teacher/Event Planner/Taxi Driver/Recreational Therapist:
By day, a Day Care Center Teacher. By afternoon, an Event Planner. Depending on the age of the kids you can call something an activity or an event. Filling the mornings with productive activities to help their little brains grow=productive play, story times, crafts, walks, etc. We try to avoid tv in the mornings and explore the world around us. When the big kids get home from school we move onto events: bigger outings that require more planning, but also have the potential for more fun.
Planning, scheduling, and transportation to extra-curricular activities is something I am enjoying a break from right now. Life was a little too crazy, so we too a break from any type of activity that I have to drive the kids to. I’m sure this won’t last forever and someday I will once again be driving kids to dance, soccer, basketball, etc.
Academic Advisor/Public School Teacher/Education:
Thought you’d never use math again? You will become the live-in math tutor. Better brush up on those skills now! Everyone does homework at the same time so I can just move around the table and help those who need it, and make sure the others stay on task! Reading out loud to kids helps teach them new words and explore different things that wouldn’t normally come up in conversation around the house.
Passing on skills for extra-curricular activities is always handy. I am musically inclined, so I teach each of my kids to play piano. We work on simple sports skills like basketball, catch, frisbee, soccer, etc during the summer to help with their coordination. Take advantage of your talents and hobbies and teach them to your children!
SAHMs have the potential to blow all the money. We could shop all day long if we wanted! (if you really want to shop with your kids all day). As the Accountant or Chief Financial Officer of the household, you are responsible to ensure a budget is made and stuck to. It is so easy to overspend “for the good of the family”. Designer clothes, shopping solely at Whole Foods, etc. But there is a less-expensive alternative that can be achieved with a budget and communication with the maker of the money. Think of it this way: the more money you save, the more money you have! (Astounding concept, I know, but you’d be surprised how many people don’t understand this)
Looking over this list, you can see why SAHMs have such a great monetary value. Even if it doesn’t seem rewarding day in and day out. SAHMs have many options each day: they can dress for success, plan productively, and strive to meet personal and family goals. Or, you can roll out of bed, turn the tv on, and try to survive until the kids go to bed again. It’s your career, it’s your choice!
Do you view being a SAHM as your career choice?