…I am a Stay-At-Home-Mum.
I took my students out on a photography field trip to East Coast Park last week. I love field trips because it allows me to leave the campus for some fresh air and a new environment. Plus, the kids get to exercise their creativity and practise their photography.
While waiting for them to finish their assignment at Starbucks, I started musing. It was a really beautiful morning: gentle sea breeze, moderate temperature, low humidity and not too sunny. I could see the ships hovering at the edge of the sea’s horizon and there were little kids running around in glee at the nearby childcare centre. All I could think of was how much my little man would enjoy being here. And then, I’d bring him home for a nap while I prepare lunch and we may head over to the library after that. Some days, we may go swimming or to the museum or to the airport to look at the planes that he’s so head over heels in love with. Maybe we’ll meet up with our friends and have a playdate.
But this is not my life. That’s not us.
Before I had Aidan, I contemplated becoming a SAHM. I am someone with strong views on how I wanted to bring up my child and I knew that some of these views are in conflict with his caregivers – my mother and my mother-in-law. Both of them are headstrong and stubborn women who do not necessarily listen to our views and opinions, insisting on doing it their way. And in many ways, I have had to compromise and learn to choose the battles to fight.
It has not been an easy compromise but that is another post for another day.
At the same time, I know that I am romanticising being a SAHM. My four months of maternity leave have taught me that reality is far from what I had imagined. There are poopy bums to clean, tantrums to manage, activities to be done, laundry to be washed. And downtime will be precious and rare.
I enjoy my job, I like being around my students, my colleagues and working environment are pleasant. And more importantly, I value the time away for me to be me and not just MAMA. And that was why I chose to return to the workforce.
In the meantime, I’ll continue doing this 100% Mama-100% Working Adult juggle until we can figure out the next evolution of our family.