After 14 years of being a stay at home mom, I’ve finally re-entered the work force…sort of. I now run a successful website, right from the comfort of my own, mind-numbingly cluttered home. So, although I’ve certainly returned to work, I haven’t “re-entered” anywhere. I’ve become a new kind of stay at home mom – the kind that stays home AND works.
As a full-time working and stay at home mom, I still do everything that I’ve always done for my family, with the added benefit of having less time to do it. I do all the grocery shopping, keep four children fed and clothed, drive all the carpools, and clean most of the toilets. I am the cook, the baker, and the dentist appointment taker. But, in between mulching the garden and guitar lessons, I now sit at my computer and work. A couple of hours here, a few minutes there; whenever it’s convenient or inconvenient, I work. I send urgent emails during early morning lunch prep, and ensure that my schedule is clear when the school bus drops my other job back home at 3pm. Of course, there’s plenty of time to get work done during the school day, as long it fits conveniently around never-ending laundry, bringing in the forgotten aforementioned lunches, and the rotating sick-child-at-home.
I also now combine my “to do” lists, making for a very interesting daily schedule. Web development meetings are gingerly tucked in between picking up prescriptions and buying Star Wars underpants. My minivan becomes my “office” during soccer practice (thank you, hot spot). It’s not easy to work this way, much less do it well. In fact, it’s downright overwhelming. But I adore my family, and I’m so passionate about my new endeavor, that I’m determined to make it work.
In the meantime, my family has learned to accept that things may not be running quite as they were. Three of my four kids shower regularly (75%). There’s usually food in the fridge (95%), clean Star Wars underpants (85%), and kisses at bedtime (100%). Of course, other minor details get lost in the “fullness” of my life, such as field trip permission slips, baseball socks, and various conversations with friends. The soccer practice schedule? No idea. We just keep going until no one shows up.
Despite the occasional (okay, frequent) chaos, my family is actually pretty happy and healthy. Sure, they miss a few things here and there, but what they’ve gained in return is a working stay at home mom who feels inspired and fulfilled; a mom who’s still trying to organize her new life around her old one, and is getting better at it every day. A mom who feels like she’s finally becoming a complete female role model for her kids.
So, I’d like to thank my husband and kids for their ongoing patience and support while I become a better working stay at home mom. Not sure how long it will take to raise my percentages, but with their full support, I know I’ll get there. And to all the other moms like me, please just keep on keeping on. Two full-time jobs is a tough road, but working moms like us are driven to succeed. And for me, there’s no detour.
Abby Helman Kelly is the founder and owner of www.glutenfreeconnecticut.com, the state’s most comprehensive and up-to-date gluten-free resource. She can be reached at email@example.com.
Gluten-Free Connecticut, LLC
P.O. Box 534
West Simsbury, CT 06092
One thought on “I Reentered the Workforce. But Why am I Still at Home?”
I love this post – I work from home 3 days a week and it’s hard to balance work-work and mom- work. And I recently found your website (I’ve been gluten free for 4 months) and it is a lifesaver! Thank you so much!!! Lisa