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The End Of Mommy Sabbatical... Going Back To Work.


changed

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Now that my kids are all in school, I'm heading back to school too - just got a job teaching at a local college. It will be a great job, with the same schedule as my kids so I’ll still be there for them when they need me, and I’m even going to have time to continue my volunteer work at their school.

Just wanted to throw my experiences out there to any stay-at-home moms who might be reading this / or anyone contemplating women’s roles etc. etc. I was a stay-at-home mom for 8 years. I put my career on hold (I have a PhD), and did a complete 180° switch in life. Colleagues raised their eyebrows at me, non-Mormon relatives questioned my new religion (I’m a convert) wondering about all the things it seemed to be taking away from me. I had to redefine who I was, and redefine what was important in life. Now I know life’s not about how smart you are, or how prestigious your titles are, or how much money you make – it’s about learning to be selfless, to give it all up for something better – of what real, genuine relationships are made up of, what it means to be a parent, to be a wife, a daughter – that family really is more important than any worldly accomplishments, and that the greatest work you will ever do really is within the walls of your own home.

Now that I have learned these lessons – or at least learned a lot of these lessons, have changed my goals in life (my biggest goals are now to see the kids married in the temple, to see them go on missions, and stay strong in their faith, rather than any career oriented goals) … Now that I can put my career in it’s proper perspective, I’ve been given back what I once gave up. Lose your life, and eventually you find it again…

Anyways, I just wanted to share how precious my mommy sabbatical was to me, how I would not trade those 8 years with my children for any advancement I may have made working in universities and at national labs. For those who question the dignity, nobility, or worth of motherhood when compared to all the worldly aspirations out there – if you can manage to let go and lose your life, and I know how hard that can be, how hard it is to put everyone else first, to become an unpaid janitor when you could holding down prestigious respected positions – if you can let go and lose your life, you really can find yourself, and like Job, at the end of the day, you will be repaid a hundred fold of what you originally gave up.

Motherhood is a just a few short precious years of your very long life - there is time to do it all and be it all, just not all at once. Embrace all the seasons of your life, take joy in the journey, don't be too concerned with falling behind, see how precious the gifts that you have are, come to know what is really important in life, and then when you have your priorities all straightened out, God will give you everything that you could possibly imagine. Be patient, have hope, and above all, follow the Spirit's advice of what is most important, and what give life the most Meaning and Purpose.

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Hello changed... I had just posted on the other thread... and said that IMO you will have a greater appreciation of your renewed path than you would have had you not had your 8 mommy years.

You will feel freer because you'll know you can still be there for your children, and will be able to continue to volunteer at their school.

Good luck... enjoy!

GG

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Thanks GG! So many people undervalue the experience of motherhood, and it can be so hard to make family #1 in your life, I certainly did not have the personality for it, never wanted to be a mom when I was growing up, never played with dolls or did any of the feminine things "nurturing" was not in my nature. It really was a leap of faith for me to take on the role of mother, but now I'm finally starting to get it. So glad I listened to the lessons in relief society!

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As I am sure you know, the statement in the title that you are going back to work after being a stay at home mom for 8 years, gives a bit of irony.

My kids are still my #1 priority, and I am very lucky to have a job that does not take them away from me, or me away from them. I just wanted to make the statement that choosing to spend a chunk of your life at home with kids does not mean the rest of your life is over and gone. In the long run, you can actually become a more balanced, fulfilled person through having experienced being a parent (that is, if you do the parent thing right - ie - learning to let go of everything else for a time, learning to actually put your kids first).

Here is an interesting article: "New research is fueling outrage that women who don't have kids aren't just selfish losers, but dumb ones as well"

http://www.theguardi...not-having-kids

"If any value is deeply evolutionarily familiar, it is reproductive success. If any value is truly unnatural, if there is one thing that humans (and all other species in nature) are decisively not designed for, it is voluntary childlessness. All living organisms in nature, including humans, are evolutionarily designed to reproduce. Reproductive success is the ultimate end of all biological existence." ~ Satoshi Kanazawa

LOL, it seems Mormons are not the only ones who view having kids as being an important part of life's experience and purpose.

Here's another fun article for contemplation:

http://rebukingfemin...nist-alice.html

"She's revered as a trail-blazing feminist and author Alice Walker touched the lives of a generation of women. A champion of women's rights, she has always argued that motherhood is a form of servitude. But one woman didn't buy in to Alice's beliefs - her daughter, Rebecca, 38....Rebecca Walker, whose mother was the feminist author of The Color Purple - who thought motherhood a form of servitude, is now proud to be a mother herself....

The truth is that I very nearly missed out on becoming a mother - thanks to being brought up by a rabid feminist who thought motherhood was about the worst thing that could happen to a woman.

You see, my mum taught me that children enslave women. I grew up believing that children are millstones around your neck, and the idea that motherhood can make you blissfully happy is a complete fairytale.

Family love? A young Rebecca with her parents

In fact, having a child has been the most rewarding experience of my life. Far from 'enslaving' me, three-and-a-half-year-old Tenzin has opened my world. My only regret is that I discovered the joys of motherhood so late"

you have to read these articles, they are priceless.

Edited by changed
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Changed said, "Motherhood is a just a few short precious years of your very long life - there is time to do it all and be it all, just not all at once."

I think this is the absolute key. You can do it all, just not at the same time. Otherwise you end up giving 50% to each endeavour and not being happy with either.

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