“What are you going to do when your kids start school?” Have you ever gotten that question? I’ve heard it from friends, family, and even complete strangers. Most mean well when they ask, but sometimes I get the sense that my life won’t amount to anything until my kids go to school and I can go back to work. But do you know what? I don’t think I will go back to work. I actually plan to stay at home.
Most people assume that your stay-at-home mom career will end when your youngest child begins school. Why should you stay at home while your kids are gone all day? Why would you stay at home when you can go to work? Many people don’t see the point, but here are 7 reasons to stay at home even after your kids go to school.
1. You can stay home. Becoming a stay-at-home mom usually requires some planning. Living on one salary isn’t always easy, but if you and your husband have made it work, there’s no reason to change things if you don’t need to. If it’s not broke, don’t fix it, as they say. If you can stay home, then do it (if you want to, that is).
2. You want to be present for your children. Even when your kids are in school, events like parent-teacher conferences, classroom parties, and talent shows are easier to attend if you’re already home. I have many fond memories of my mom serving as class mom for parties and volunteering as a chaperon on our class trips. It’s also much easier to handle sick days, snow days, and vacation days when you don’t have to take time off from work to be with your kids when they’re out of school.
3. You were never passionate about your work to begin with. Plenty of people work because they just need the money. Or the insurance. Or the experience. They take jobs that they don’t even like, because they need the work. But after staying at home with your kids for a few years (or ten), you might find that you don’t need to work. So why should you work at a job that you don’t like, or even hate, when you don’t have to?
4. You want to volunteer some of your free time. I’ve always enjoyed volunteering for our church, but when I was working, I didn’t have much time, and even now as a stay-at-home mom, I still don’t have time. But as the kids get older, they become more self-sufficient. You can shower in peace, go for a run without the jogging stroller, and run errands alone. And you might even have enough time to help out at the soup kitchen once a month, if that’s how you want to volunteer some of your time.
5. You’ve already worked out a routine that works for you and your family. After being at home with your kids for years, you and your husband are bound to have settled into a nice routine. You know who does the laundry, who vacuums the carpet, and who washes the dishes. You know when to pick up the groceries, when to bring the kids to their baseball practice, and when to run the dishwasher. Life is smooth, so why rock the boat when the seas are so calm?
6. You want to pursue a passion that doesn’t make money. I know a lot of moms who have picked up some really random talents while at home with their children- knitting, sewing, baking, and writing, just to name a few. Once your kids are in school, you can use some of your newfound free time to pursue those passions that you’ve discovered since becoming a mom- or if you don’t have a passion yet, see if you can’t find one!
7. You want to stay home. This is the number one reason why I plan to stay home after my kids grow up. I don’t want to go back to work. I loved my job while I had it, but I love being at home more. I don’t foresee that my feelings will change as my kids get older. I don’t want to go back to work. So I won’t. If we don’t need the extra money, why should I feel obligated to work a job I don’t enjoy when I could be at home or in our community, pursuing my passions and serving people?