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Question for SAHMs...

post #1 of 15
Thread Starter 

Hello! I've been lurking on here for the past few weeks, finally registered. You guys seem pretty awesome! Because of that, I'm wondering if anyone has experience with something I'm going through, past or present...

 

I've always had a hunch that I'd want to stay home once I had children. I've been a workaholic for years, FORCED myself to quit my "career" job because it was about killing me 2 years ago. Since then, I've been doing this and that, freelancing. Now here I am, 12 weeks along in my first pregnancy (age 30), and....

 

I don't want to work anymore.

 

I feel VERY busy with learning as much as I can and getting ready for this LO. My freelancing work, which I picked specifically because it wasn't demanding and was super flexible, seems utterly pointless now and makes me incredibly irritable. Like crying irritable. My husband's in the Marines, and we've had many discussions about the benefits of having a SAH parent in military families (that's how I was raised). He's slowly coming to terms with the idea; but as he was raised by a single mom in very tight circumstances, he's fairly terrified that if I don't work, we'll go broke. I've explained all the ways a SAH can make money go further while making life better, if that's what the partner really wants to do. He's getting there. Slowly. He's now tentatively ok with me staying home once the baby's born.

 

But neither of us thought I'd want to stop working this soon! Has anyone else had a similar experience? It's just like...work is boring and frustrating and makes me mad, and there's so much to do to get ready for the baby (esp since we're moving across country in - eek - 2 months!), plus I've had CRAZY fatigue and some other unpleasant symptoms/couple of scares.

 

This isn't like me. I have a very strong work ethic. It just seems to all be aimed at mom-stuff currently. Has anyone else been there?

post #2 of 15

yes! except that once i got out of school (at 24, i was more of the workaholic type with school than i was with work) work was something i did to kill time/make money until i could be a SAHM (i was 25 when i became a SAHM)  i never liked my job.. my husband was always on board with it being the best thing for our family,  we just weren't sure how we would do it financially at first..  it worked out just fine.  I ended up holding out at my full time job until 34 weeks to keep/use my insurance and save as much money as possible .. we also moved mid pregnancy (around 18 weeks) which was incredibly stressful while working and pregnant (of course, we moved when i was pregnant with my 2nd too.. that wasn't much better!)

 

It sounds like your husband would be more comfortable with you continuing to work for now..  and if you are worried that he won't be comfortable with you staying home after the baby, or long term, then maybe it would bet better to ease him into the transition of you not working?

If I were you, I'd try to pace myself.. work some, do some baby research, do some packing/prepare for moving and rest/relax/survive as needed..  maybe reward yourself with something you want to do for the baby for a certain about of work..  this is assuming your work is really flexible .. but if you really can slow way down and it will help you financially then i would try to do that..   of course, if it is really stressing you out knowing you have to work at all and you can afford it and your husband is ok with it, then you could quit and focus on house stuff/baby prep.  

post #3 of 15
Thread Starter 

I should pick your brain about pregnant moves, lol. As a former Navy brat turned MC wife, I have MANY moves under my belt - but none of them involved pregnancy!

 

This was very helpful, thank you. DH and I have done a lot of talking (and a fair bit of crying on my side, stoopid hormones) yesterday and today, and we're adjusting. We CAN afford it, it just means modifying our savings goals (all of my income was going towards saving already). I think you make a really good point about transitioning. Thinking about that, I realize I HAVE been transitioning over the past two years. First I was trying to start an intense business, then I did some food service work outside the home, then I did some network marketing, before finally easing back into my recent, part time freelance work. I just never expected to fully stop this soon. But we're both making peace with it.

 

It's interesting...I expected it to be an issue of having to convert DH, but man! It's bringing up a bunch of issues for me, too.
 

post #4 of 15

on moving while pregnant - there honestly isn't much i can say other than "don't do it" lol  the only thing worse would be moving with a itty bitty baby.. though if you only had one, even that would be easier in some ways than moving while pregnant!  our moves have been different though, because they were just across town (20-35 mins away), and we had both houses for at least a  week both times.. I had friends come over and help me to pack small things (one friend and one room at a time)  so i didn't have to stand on a chair to get things out of the high cabinets in the kitchen and get up and down over and over, or lift or push boxes around.  All those things caused me to get really tired, really sore, and have braxton hicks contractions..  it is so hard to take it easy when you have so much to do, but you have to really pace yourself. 

 

the transition to becoming a SAHM is a really big deal for pretty much everyone, even when you know its what you always wanted..  its still a big change.. and it can take a long time to fully adjust.. like years.   I think i've felt 100% comfortable with everything that is being a SAHM for 3 years now  (which means it took me 3-3.5 years to get there ;) )

post #5 of 15

I feel like my brain just went into vacation mode as soon as I got pregnant. I too am driven and I was launching my own design firm this summer which was something I'd put a lot of thought and 9 years of education and experience into preparing for... and here I am... mostly napping. I have one client I'm still pretty happy to work with but a few others I just REALLY don't care to work with right now. Le sigh. I think it's hormones to be honest. It will pass. Deep down I really have the desire to work... it's just getting mistranslated somewhere. 

post #6 of 15

I'm a workaholic/strong-work-ethic type too, and let me tell you.... once those babies are born, your focus turns onto them so hard and the baby/ies become your new career! It's much more than a 40-hour thing. Especially if you then have another baby. And then another. And you decide to take their education into your own hands. Plus you want to feed them healthy things and that takes, like, 6 hours a day to prepare.... you get the idea. 

 

I worked until 37 weeks w/ my first pregnancy, we just really really really needed the money and I would have been bored all day otherwise. My heart wasn't in the work, I was just a receptionist and I knew I would be leaving, so I can't really speak to wanting to give up work when you enjoy what you do.

post #7 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by margarita b View Post

I'm a workaholic/strong-work-ethic type too, and let me tell you.... once those babies are born, your focus turns onto them so hard and the baby/ies become your new career! It's much more than a 40-hour thing. Especially if you then have another baby. And then another. And you decide to take their education into your own hands. Plus you want to feed them healthy things and that takes, like, 6 hours a day to prepare.... you get the idea. 

 

 

this is SO true.  I totally direct my strong work ethic toward my family/kids ...  its a 24/7 job, i don't take breaks from my kids (except very rarely), i don't do 'me time' (unless its just because they are sleeping),  DH & I don't go out for date nights (we put the kids to bed and stay in), i homeschool and spend a lot of time cooking (except when i'm pregnant) and i love it, i feel very satisfied with my life and my 'work' and i NEVER get bored ;)

post #8 of 15

Yeah, everything you just said. :)

 

If you're driven about your career, you may be even more driven about your chickens.

post #9 of 15
Thread Starter 

You know, it feels like that's exactly what's happening. Because I've gone from supporting myself to having a partner who really does make enough for us to live on (ok, not dinners out every night, but we're consumer debt-free and can afford our bills, including his VERY nice car, and still have money for treats and savings). And it feels like the "drive" part of my brain just went, "OK! Money's good, we're set there, next priority: BABIES. Nothing else matters!" Especially since the work I've been doing was just busy work to bring in money to put away; I haven't done work I'm passionate about since I quit the soul-sucking job back in 2010.

 

I emailed my one remaining contract client yesterday to say I think it may be time for me to resign. She's a friend, actually a former boss from my intense job; we have one of those formed-in-the-trenches, bombproof friendships so I felt comfortable getting her take. And - it turns out she was going to have to make the difficult decision to end my contract by Sept 1 anyway! She's re-structuring her company and was going to try to keep me on through the end of the month, but that was going to be about it. So everything really does seem to be coming together.

 

Maybe I just can't believe this is really happening, and I'm this happy. Of course, all my friends and mentors who are moms are there to say that I'll be working my @$$ off in no time, and to enjoy the break! ^_^

post #10 of 15

Looks like you've got all the right signs. Wow, if you can be happy during your pregnancy, go for it! 

post #11 of 15

For me, it was a big transition going from career corporate world to SAHM. I love being a SAHM (4 years now!) but it wasn't easy. From a military wife perspective, I'm so glad that I stayed home. DH's schedule is very dynamic and sometimes I might only see him during the day. I wouldn't have that if I was working my old schedule.

post #12 of 15
Thread Starter 

Ha! "Dynamic." I love that. We've gotten so spoiled at this command, I've forgotten that's another big reason.

 

I know there are really strong feelings on both sides of the discussion about having the non-active duty partner stay home. I grew up that way: Dad was a career Naval officer, and mom stayed home, held the fort, homeschooled me, etc. I don't think either way is perfect, and I don't think any 2 families are exactly alike; you just do what you personally are best suited for. My first marriage was also military, and staying home was HORRIBLE, even without kids. Mainly because staying home seems to make it more difficult to ignore your actual marriage!
 

I've just learned over the years that I'm really, really good at home management, and much happier right now doing that than an outside job. The amount of money I can blow through due to stress from a "normal" job has always exceeded the amount I actually bring in - I can't even imagine how much worse that would be with a LO around. And with Beast's background, which involved a very loving but materially unpredictable home life, I'm very driven to give him the kind of home base I know is possible. He might not have been able to imagine it at first, but he's getting there. And, bless him, I've realized all I really needed to say was, "This is best for me, and I want to do it now. Will you give it a chance, at least?"

post #13 of 15

Yes, dynamic is the best way that I can put it (at least for this command). ROTFLMAO.gifIt's good to know that DH is being open to it, even if it is hard for him.

post #14 of 15
Quote:
Originally Posted by etsdtm99 View Post

 

this is SO true.  I totally direct my strong work ethic toward my family/kids ...  its a 24/7 job, i don't take breaks from my kids (except very rarely), i don't do 'me time' (unless its just because they are sleeping),  DH & I don't go out for date nights (we put the kids to bed and stay in), i homeschool and spend a lot of time cooking (except when i'm pregnant) and i love it, i feel very satisfied with my life and my 'work' and i NEVER get bored ;)

 

LOL- i think being a SAHM is the most satisfying thing i've ever done.  i was 9 months pregnant in grad school taking aramaic (this was after i quit my insurance job when first pregnant b/c it seemed so STUPID to be doing that when obviously i needed to sleep 14 hours a day and train a dog and be pregnant) and was just like 'this is useless and stupid.'  i passed the exam, but have never made it back to grad school.  

 

i also have a military father and my mom was a SAHM and while it was hard, i think it taught me to appreciate and respect the importance and blessing of what she offered.  'dynamic' is hilarious!

 

this sounds a lot like me- except my 'me' time is quiet time when i just need to recharge.  as an introvert, if i don't get some quiet time to just recharge, i can't be the mother i need to be the other 23 hours of the day....  but for my quiet time, the kids are coloring, or eating, or playing happily, or sleeping.  having a schedule makes us all happy.  right now our days are so ridiculously idyllic- we have breakfast from 8-9am, then clean up and get dressed and walk 1/2 mile (i carry one baby, the other 3 walk) to the local farm where we visit the piglets, the sheep, our friend's calf, week some rows of veggies, harvest some veggies for our family and for others, pick some flowers, and wander home for lunch.  then quiet time until 2:30 or 3 after lunch.  then we all cook dinner, and clean up, sing songs, and bedtime between 7:30-8:30, with some variation to see friends and swim at the pond.  c'mon- this is the life!  farm foods, great community (often on the farm), and lots of great time together.

post #15 of 15
Thread Starter 

Good grief, HoP, that does sound crazy perfect! I'm going to just picture that for a bit; maybe I'll get the chance to do something similar in our next duty station.

 

You know, in retrospect I probably shouldn't be surprised at the transition of focus from work-work-work to make-a-home-for-baby. I've always been kind of an all-or-nothing person, especially with things I'm emotionally involved with. The life-consuming work I quit 2 years ago was in animal cruelty prevention and response, and I had literally no other outside interests or pursuits while doing it. And I loved it. I'd be there today if the place I worked had treated its workers better, and allowed me to avoid some of the physical and mental wear and tear that eventually kept me from being able to continue. You'd think I'd have learned by now that when there's that sort of intensity plus emotion plus lots and lots of details to keep track of, I'm happy as one of those piglets in mud! I don't stress over it, I love it! Plus, the solitude that more social people find so trying is like air to me. Not a bad gig, I'd say.
 

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