I was a stay-at-home mom until my youngest was in kindergarten. This choice was made because it was what worked best for our family. My husband often worked long hours and we moved around a lot. We have never lived close to family. We wanted our kids to have at least one parent taking care of them as a constant. A few years ago I heard a comment that rubbed me the wrong way. It still does. Someone said to me “I don’t stay at home with my kids because I want to be well-rounded.” Well, isn’t that a goal of all moms?! No one says “I want to become a mom and lose all sense of myself!” While our priorities drastically change once we have kids, I believe it’s possible to be “well-rounded” and a stay-at-home mom.
I have an amazing husband who has always supported my dreams. With his encouragement, I started a business during my time as a “well-rounded” stay-at-home mom that stemmed from a painting hobby. Additionally, I started learning about essentials oils as a complement to western medicine. I’m also currently taking this from a hobby to a business. I realize that not all stay-at-home moms have this support and these resources. One of my friends learned a new language during her time at home with her kids. You don’t have to take it that far. It could be as simple as listening to music you enjoy that doesn’t include the words “Baby Shark.”
Exercise Your Mind
I’ve always LOVED reading but didn’t make much time for it when I was working pre-kids. During my time as a stay-at-home mom, I was really able to get back into this. Non-fiction is my favorite. Kids learn by example and studies have shown that children who see their parents read are more likely to be interested in reading themselves. I still find that carrying a book with me wherever I go helps me to sneak in a few pages when I have a spare minute.
Exercise Your Body
Physical activity has always been fun and important to me. I prefer doing this in a group setting or class. If joining a gym isn’t your jam or isn’t in your budget, take advantage of the beautiful weather here in Tampa! Walk, run or bike with your kids outside. I’ve always been a huge advocate of having my kids see me being active. While embracing this philosophy, I was able to get in great shape physically. It also kept me happy mentally too!
Bottom Line – It is possible to be a “Well-Rounded” Stay-at-Home Mom
I don’t think this “well-rounded” stay-at-home mom comment I received years ago was necessarily spoken with ill-intent. If working makes some moms feel good, and it benefits your family, then go for it! Everyone’s parenting choices involve some degree of sacrifice. I know mine did and still do. One could also argue that working moms aren’t “well-rounded”, but that’s not a true statement either. Now that I’m self-employed and back in the game, so-to-speak, I can tell you this. My love/hate relationship with Microsoft Outlook picked up right where we left off, even though we were separated for quite some time.