I had jobs I greatly enjoyed before I had kids, but I've never been a "career" sort of person. To be really honest with you, I don't see my kids as a career either. I thought I was going to have a hard time transitioning out of having kids home 24/7 (my youngest entered 1st grade this year--first time "all day" school experience with all kids in school), but to be really honest with you? I've been having the time of my life. I get to do my house. I get to do school activities. I get to do my art. I get to take myself to lunch or to the movies. I can volunteer and do things I used to do for a job, except for (ironically) more appreciation and internal reward because I help the budget of the organization stretch further without being paid.
So I think I am just truly not a career person. SAHMing was the hardest gig for someone like me, because I had to get up and do the same thing every day for 7 years. I don't know if it was folks like me that you wanted to hear from or people who think of their kids as their careers (which I certainly do not), but I have met other people like me face to face.
In many ways, being able to claim SAHMdom has given me legitimacy in being myself, because people understand that (or think they do) and it's socially acceptible in the way "What do I do? Oh, I love to hang out with homeless folks/incarcerated folks/developmentally disabled folks and I need lots of different activities and things to do." isn't.
ETA: Hmmm, didn't read much beyond the first post, perhaps I should have. I'm sure there are those who think I'm only "part-timing" since I have my kids in school.
That kind of attitude (that people who choose differently are "part timing" parenthood) really makes me sad though. Some people really enjoy the specific environments that you can only find in certain workplaces. I don't see anything wrong with that. Any more that I think it's wrong of me to be totally uninterested in that sort of thing and to prefer freedom/flexibility. Maybe that's why I've never been a "SAHM is the best" sort of person, or that there's a certain checklist you have to complete before you count as a "full time" parents--I wouldn't want to exchange freedom from a WOH situation to stuff myself into a narrow box at home, KWIM?