Thursday, January 19, 2012

Thankful Thursday

On this thankful Thursday I am thankful for the opportunity to be a stay-at-home mom. I know that seems sort of basic, like duh, of course she's thankful for that. But I really am truly, very, very thankful. And I know this post will not come close to scratching the surface of all that staying-at-home means for me. I have been doing this for almost eleven years. That's a lot of diapers and sleepless nights! Perhaps I'll write more on this later, but for now, here's a little background how it came to be.  

Prior to having children, I always thought I would be a stay-at-home mom, but after having Hailey, we still had a financial dependency on my job. I went back to work part-time after having her and we managed to make that work for a while. Surprisingly, we did it without formal childcare. I had a friend watch her if I was in a jam and my mother-in-law would drive the hour to our house to watch her when I needed an all day solution.

 First family photo - just out of the hospital.

Eventually, our schedules got to be a little more difficult to manage after I had Jackson. When he was about six months old, I made the complete transition to being at home full time. Brad used to tease me that I was never actually "at home". I tried MOPS, a bible study during the week and Mom's Morning Out to name a few. Those activities combined with park play dates and visits with friends kept me plenty busy but also gave me the encouragement and confidence I needed to make it work.
First picture with Jackson, big difference in size from Hailey.
Fast forward nine years and I have three more children and am still at home.  Naturally, I think I'm slightly better at it than I was in the beginning. But not much. And now that we have Piper, I feel like I'm starting over in a way. I feel like I have a little more patience and a lot more grace with the kids, although there are times they might disagree. I do know they appreciate me being home, they've told me from time to time. More importantly, Brad appreciates me being home and makes it possible that I can.

Some day are better than others, not everyday is sunshine and lollipops, I know - shocker! But today, I want to say how thankful I am that I have been given this opportunity. I'm thankful for Brad working so hard, day and night, so I can stay at home. I'm thankful for all the projects he does on the side, even though it means I do this solo (a lot). I'm thankful that we are in a community that has a huge support system for moms that are at home. I'm thankful that I have a network of people through Orchard Hill Church and Mom's Morning Out that continue to provide that encouragement we all need. And I'm thankful that I still have at least another three years of doing this, it's such a blessing. With all the challenges of being at home, I have never regretted my decision. It's very clear to me that this is where I'm meant to be.
~ Misty

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