"That they (the older women) admonish the young women to be sober, to love their husbands, to love their children, to be discreet, chaste, keepers at home, good, obedient to their own husbands, that the word of God be not blasphemed." Titus 2:4-5

Monday, October 5, 2009

Mom Monday

I know that I've appreciated Amy's "Mommy, Come Home" series at The Finer Things in Life blog. I don't know if I've shared this on my blog yet, but my decision to be a stay at home mom was both a difficult and easy one. :) Sound confusing? Let me explain.

As I shared about a week ago, when I became a Christian, I was in my first year of college, studying to be an engineer. After becoming a Christian, I decided God was still calling me to finish my schooling in Civil Engineering. I met my husband in my Junior year and by the fall of my Senior year we were married (November). Because of our convictions at the time, I was pregnant about 3 weeks after the wedding. :) I graduated with my Bachelor's in Civil Engineering in May of 2007 and my lovely daughter Elizabeth was born in August of 2007. Yes, it was a very interesting last semester of college.

It was easy to stay at home because I always knew that when I had children, I would stay at home with them. Even before I became a Christian, I knew I would want to homeschool my children. I fell in love with my baby (and now my second baby!) and when my husband gave me the option of going back to work recently, I struggled very hard mentally and emotionally for a while before deciding I couldn't leave them. I kept picturing myself sitting at a desk missing them while they were somewhere else growing up and learning things I wanted to teach them.

The decision to stay home was also very difficult. I hadn't read or heard of Dave Ramsey or Money Matters before I finished college and I ended up getting close to $16,000 in school loans. I figured that I could easily repay them once I graduated and worked for a while as an engineer. What I hadn't figured in was that I would meet my wonderful hubby and soon afterward have a wonderful baby.

So, every day since deciding to stay at home I've had to grapple with the fact that our family was $16,000 in debt because of me and I have the ability to go to work and probably make double my husband's salary as a Carpenter. It's often felt like a big waste and can be very frustrating. I have exhausted MANY possible ways to work at home to basically no avail (I'm greatly looking forward to Money Saving Mom's Work from Home series!!). There's still a few more I'm working on, so who knows? Has it all been in vain?

Of course not. It just feels that way at times. When I get compliments on how well behaved and smart my kids are, I realize a lot of it has to do with all the one on one time I can give them and train them with. I've learned so much about how to handle money. If I were working, I might make more money, but I bet a lot of that would be wasted in my lack of time for coupons, freebies and just general time to learn. I learned about Dave Ramsey and budgeting because I HAD to. If we weren't tight financially, I probably wouldn't be as good at money management and would waste a lot more. I'm sure this will pay off someday. I'm trading the pleasures of more money now for benefits later.

Lastly, and most importantly, I know that for right now, this is where God has me. My children have taught me invaluable lessons about life and God and I've been shown the true state of my heart more than once. If you want to follow along with me in some of the things my children have taught me (both serious and hilarious) you can check out Mom Mondays and Before Motherhood... I've chosen, despite the difficulties financially and mentally, to stay at home with my children and when given the chance, I chose not to do it any other way! I'm so thankful for all the great support in the Blog World for stay at home moms (Like the Mommy Come Home Series)! I know at times it's been a real encouragement and kept me going, which is why I also try to offer encouragement through my Mom Mondays. A great big thank you for allowing God to use you to encourage others!! Despite the difficulties, I am very thankful to be able to stay home!


Amy @ Finer Things on October 5, 2009 at 9:15 PM said...

Janeen -- This is just fantastic. So good to read about a mama following her heart even when it's hard. Kudos to you. Thanks for sharing your story!

Anonymous said...

Good for you staying at home. I couldnt' agree more. That is also one of the reasons for our homeschooling, I couldn't bear the thought of being away from my kindergartner 7 hours every day.

Amy Lynne on October 6, 2009 at 8:02 AM said...

I think it's great! Just think having an engineering degree will help you when it's time for your kids to start calculus! What a blessing!

Samantha on October 6, 2009 at 8:23 AM said...

Such a great reminder this morning - I think those who don't stay home often think it's an easy decision and it isn't!

Joyful on October 6, 2009 at 8:39 AM said...

Thank you so much for letting us know about the Taste of Home freebies. I downloaded all of them. And Facebooked them.

Tracey on October 6, 2009 at 9:45 AM said...

Thanks for sharing your heart! I agree that our sacrifices now will pay off in a big way in the future. I'm also looking forward to Money Saving Mom's series on working from home!

JessieLeigh on October 9, 2009 at 4:38 PM said...

What a beautiful story of following your heart and your calling. Thanks so much for sharing your story.

The Pittman Family on October 13, 2009 at 9:01 PM said...

I found you through Amy's blog and couldn't agree with you more. And I love Dave Ramsey too!!



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