I was visiting my mom and younger sister recently (with my boys) and my sister asked me this question (or some variation of it) and I struggled to put into words how I feel about this particular topic. I've been thinking about it for a couple weeks now, trying to find just the right way to answer this question and similar questions that I've been asked since choosing to stop job hunting and be a stay at home mom (SAHM).
In short: No, I don't want a career.
The long answer is a bit more complicated, so here goes...
Yes, I do plan on working again, when the boys start school and I have "free time." I do miss socializing with grown people and discussing things not related to the people that came out of me. I miss not having to guard my tongue and make sure I don't use any adult language that little ears might hear and little mouths might repeat. I miss being just a person, and only being responsible for myself for a few hours. I really miss not being interrupted every time I'm trying to talk to anyone about anything. I do not, however, plan to have a career outside of my home and family.
To me, a career is a high ranking priority. It takes up a bulk of your time and energy, adds stress and takes focus away from your family. For me, my kids are my highest priority and I plan to keep it that way. I refuse to let a career take me away from them. I had a career, granted it was short-lived, it did exist. I brought work home, in an effort to spend more time with Connor, but that wasn't quality time. I was neglecting something either way. I'd have a pile of papers to grade on the dining room table, or a screaming baby because he wanted something and I was too busy trying to prepare things for my students to help him.
My boys are my world. I plan to keep it that way for as long as humanly possible (without becoming a crazy clingy momma that follows them off to college and lives in the dorm across the hall). I plan on working at their school, as a paraprofessional or as a sub while they're in elementary school. Once they move on to middle and high school, I'll put more time and effort into my job, but it will still be a job to me. It will never take precedent over them and I think that a career must, at least sometimes.
I have the utmost respect for working and career moms. That takes a level of balance and time management skills that I simply don't have. I think it's amazing that there are parents out there who have figured out how to have successful careers and still prioritize their kids.
I have a bachelor's degree that I may never, directly, use again because I don't wish to go back to teaching (unless Texas massively revamps their system) and I don't have a desire to work for the government or in politics. History BA's are actually pretty limiting degrees. I would love to go back to school and get a Masters or even a PHD in Cultural Anthropology because I love learning and researching. Maybe one day I will, and then I could teach college. That's probably the only time I'll teach again. However, for the foreseeable future, I have no intentions of having a career. Just job(s) to keep me entertained outside my home and make extra cash for the boys college fund.
My children are my career.
Get your daily Nerdy fix by following us on Instagram
Writer and Contributor for the Motherhood Community