Are you a Stay at home mom, whose kids are now back in school? Is this the first time you will have your house to yourself? What do you do with your spare time? Should you go back to work?
Let’s explore what options we have as a SAHM whose kids are now all in school. What does our future look like?
What We Thought Life Would Look Like
It’s funny today’s social media mom shares their kids the first day of school, lined up next to each other most likely holding a sign, sharing their age, date, and most important, what they want to be when they grow up.
It would be interesting to see how many of these kids achieve that desire. Or how much that desire shifts into what they are meant to be doing.
(Ps… are you seeing the beautiful blue kitchen? I can’t wait to share the complete makeover before and after pics, if you are new you can check out some of our kitchen DIY makeovers here.)
What our eight-year-old self-thought we would be doing, is probably a lot different than what we are doing today? Our 19-year-old self-thought one thing but our college degree said another. Now as a thirty-year-old, we are laughing thinking, I had no idea this is what I would be doing with my life.
Well, at least this is the case for me. I NEVER thought I would be a SAHM who blogs. Sure, I always loved writing. I earned a degree in Journalism. I submitted articles to companies. I even accomplished what my 19-year-old goal was- to have my own column! (Yes I had my own money management column in our Local Daily Newspaper!)
I went from working full time to losing my job during maternity leave with my first baby. I tried to go in my own direction of what I thought I needed to do, the money I had to make, the status I needed to be known as.
The Moment I Let Go
It all becomes one big wad of missteps. The moment I stopped trying to control my own life was the moment all my hopes and dreams started seeping in from every crack of opportunity.
When I let Go and dug deeper into the bible, women groups, joining together with others who encouraged my walk with God, I realized I could have been on the right map if I just turned towards Jesus.
Today I am a blogger. Even a few months ago I would hesitate to say it. I know with every inch of my being this is right where God wants me. Sure it wasn’t my 19-year-old dream of living in NYC reporting on news breaking stories.
Or at a magazine company sharing the latest “How to Date a Guy in Your 20s”.
Once you get over those ideas you set upon yourself you realize God weaves in your every desire in little places all along your life path.
I get to write- my passion, I get to share deals and coupons– my passion. I decided to live a frugal lifestyle and being crazy cheap to pay off debt and share with others tips to do it too.
I get to help people in ways I had no idea I myself needed.
So today as it is the first day of school where I don’t have any little voices saying “Mommy, Mommy while I type away or print coupons.” I realize I’m not really faced with a new challenge like I thought I was two months ago.
Don’t Do Something Because You Can- Do It Because You Want To
Just two months ago I was looking for a job because I could.
I didn’t think God would really want me to keep sharing deals at BJs.
I didn’t think people would really care for me to share my little frugal living and animal tips.
Every time I doubt or think it can’t be. He spreads a little bit of hope and inspiration into my soul.
I received an email from a reader on my BJs site, sharing how much she enjoys my encouraging words. Others have emailed when they found out they won a gift card and said how perfect the timing was because their husband just lost his job.
These aren’t small things. They may not happen daily, but they happen.
I wanted to go back and give in to my self-control. I wanted it to be easier than disciplining myself to work, without any other obligation.
I was reminded of how deeply God loves me and you. I couldn’t turn away from Him now. Can you?
Not only will the time I have while the kids are in school allow me to work on my blogs, it will allow me to meet the girl
Now I will have 7.5 hours where I could try to be my old 26-year-old self again. Which I thought about for a minute. It stinks when you have kids in your twenties and your dream of a career gets put on hold because the magic of a newborn begs you to stay home.
Or you get laid off from work and have no choice.
The world is a whole new place when you’re a stay at home mom who now has options.
What’s a girl to do?
The View of a Mom Who Works and a Mom Who Doesn’t
Stay at home moms and work out of the home moms have different views on a few things.
I’m sure a mom who works out of the home, who hears her friend is now going to have zero kids at home is going to be able to have the time of her life.
What will you do all day?
Is a VERY common question you get asked.
The thing is being a stay at home mom is difficult, working out of the home is difficult, and working from home is just plain insanity!
The beautiful thing about transitioning to having all your kids in school is following the next course of action. The course of action God is calling you to.
“But I say, walk and live ” (habitually) in the Holy Spirit responsive to and controlled and guided by the Spirit; then you will certainly not gratify the cravings and desires of the flesh ( of human nature without God). Galatians 5:16
You Need Admirable Virtues
A virtue. That is what I am going to reflect on. Admirable virtues.
As Joyce Meyers shares “People throughout the world try to acquire these virtues through counseling or self-help books. Yet the Bible says that if we walk with God, the Spirit-filled life will produce all these things within us.
That is it. I don’t need to try to figure it out and look to our culture to get my answers. I don’t have to feel self-conscious when people ask me what am I going to do with all my free time? Or feel like the business I started and make money from isn’t validated when they look puzzled when I say, “I will be working.”
No, because if you and I give our life to God each day, he will create a right heart in you and me. One that we will want to do all the things he has asked of us.
In reality, there are five practical things I’ve come up with to fill your time or get your creative juices flowing. Again, the best thing to do is pray and spend that time with God first thing each day, and you’ll be on the exact path you were meant to be.
The one that fulfills your soul day in and day out.
Here are Practical Things You Can Do Now
Download the Marco App and chat daily with your besties.
Okay, so the Marco app is for the “older folks” the ones in their thirties who never got into Snapchat. But it’s fun. My best friend and I start our day checking in and seeing what we are up to. It’s the perfect app for busy moms or dads.
Check local organizations for volunteer positions.
Don’t get ahead of yourself, but maybe a few times a month or weekly. Whatever you feel your heart desires. Don’t just grab the first opportunity you see, look around and really think about what would be a good fit for you. Will it provide the adult conversations you are needing? Or the physical work you are looking to do?
Some ideas, local animal shelter, Habitat for Humanity, Salvation Army etc.
Take a class
What is your heart’s desire? Do you have a hobby you love but never had the time for? For me I wanted to connect with other writers, I found a writer’s group at our local library but the time didn’t work out.
Then I stumbled upon a writing workshop. Each day they offer half hour writing sessions for a certain fee per class. No commitment. you could always look at your local library or college to see what classes are being offered.
Allow your mind to be open to what it is you have a desire and passion for. If you don’t sure pray over these things.
Plan Date Nights With Your Spouse
It may seem like you are always the one who plans the dates, but this could be very beneficial to your relationship. Setting scheduled time together does wonders for your marriage whether you want to do it or not.
I love using the Dating Divas website to get my creative side going for at home date nights. If you can plan a sitter weekly spend an hour planning a special place for the two of you.
This way if the week leads up to less adult interaction then you were hoping for you at least have some time scheduled with your spouse.
Soul Search Your Dreams & Go For It
The biggest thing I would hope for each and every one of you who is in a similar position with kids going to school is to go for your dreams. With the amount of time we spend on social media we find ourselves feeling so guilty as moms for not doing enough. Even though our own eyes have become blind to all the little things we do for our children daily.
Those hugs, those daily meals prepared, the clothes, the toys, the car rides to friends, so many little things we do for our kids we think aren’t good enough.
We feel we need to go bigger and better because of what we may have seen on social media.
When you are able to go for your own personal dreams and goals you will be a more focused and happier parent when the kids come home. Okay, not every day that’s just not real life, but in general. You will go back to your feeling of accomplishment.
It won’t be easy of course but it can be done. Think about what it is you want from your life? What did you envision yourself doing before kids?
You may laugh when you think about it but think again. Is it really unachievable now?
Take a minute to reflect and think about answers to these questions from a past season.
What were you great at?
What did you love to do?
What surprised you?
Whom did you love and why did you love them?
What did you learn about yourself?
What did you dream about?
We all have gifts and talents. Check out this Spiritual Gifts Survey here.
If you are looking for more articles and information on digging deeper into finding your spiritual gifts or where you need to go with your life check out this page here.
There is a plan for this next chapter of your life. Don’t live it in fear. Take that leap of faith.
I can’t wait to see what mountains you move.
Meantime I’ll be here cheering you on, praying for you and working on my own mountain moving!