We’re breaking from the usual Fatherhood Fridays to give a very busy (and slightly sick) Joey some rest. In the meantime, I recently wrote this note for a friend who was asking advice about staying home with her (future) family.
I’m so glad that you asked! First of all, congratulations; this is an exciting time!
My personal story is that I never felt the urge to be a stay at home mom until my last semester of college (about six months before I found out that I was pregnant). To make a long story short, God put just about every barrier up to dissuade me from teaching special education in a public setting even though it had been a long-time passion of mine. As this was happening, I had the most intense desire to start a family and to be the primary caregiver. Interestingly, though we had never really talked about it, this was Joey’s desire as well. After putting aside the plans that I had made for myself, the decision was easy.
I do tend to go a little stir-crazy, so I did find a job while I was pregnant (teaching at a church day school), and I’ve had to/am still working on finding the balance for myself in staying home. It’s really important to schedule some things for yourself once you are comfortable with others babysitting for a little while (but El did attend quite a few staff meetings and Bible studies with me until very recently). I am on the staff at our church with most of the work being from home – writing children’s sermons keeps me accountable for my own spiritual walk while challenging me intellectually. I also attend a mom’s group and a couple Bible studies. Oh, and I have a blog. 🙂
Yes, there are some monetary sacrifices, but there are ways to make care-taking very cheap (cloth diapers and making your own baby food, for example). But more than the income, it will be an intense sacrifice of yourself. You will be stretched further than you ever thought possible and love more than you ever thought you could. Being a mom is the most difficult but most satisfying job there is. It sounds like God has already put that desire in your heart. I would encourage you to pray with your husband and follow what God is leading you to do.
I encouraged my friend to write or call if she needed to talk any more, and I would love to extend the same invitation to you. If there is anything you think I could help you with, or if you want to know a little more about my story, just ask. Joy to you, friend!
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