Friday, December 9, 2011

Already a bad mom...

Don't freak out, I'm not pregnant.

I've been getting a little depressed lately when I think about the possibility of motherhood. Several times I've been asked in recent months, "Are you going to keep your job once you have kids?" Keep in mind that it's only good practicing Catholic home school or Catholic school moms who've asked me this. Most of them either are or have stayed at home for a significant period of time. I often answer things like, "well you never know..." and leave it open ended, but I knwo the answer... and it kills me.


You have to understand, James works for a small private school which barely pays enough for him to live on his own. Now, he does have a lot of free time (not to mention summers off, grr), and he has been writing articles that he's hoping to get published (yes, he's actually written like 5 or 6 now, still in the editing stages, so it's not like he's just sitting at home watching TV all day. He hopes to be a professional intellectual (sigh, at least he's not one of my friends who hopes to be Socrates), and I think he has a decent chance with it. But we have talked about this ad nosiam, unless something wonderful happens (like he becomes as popular as Scott Hahn, George Weigel, or other people who neither he nor I really like), it's aint going to happen.

1) Cutting my job out means we would have to figure out how to live with a huge chunk of lost income. We have a rather large student loan debt, and the expenses from that would kill us. Now, I have friends who live in areas with a lot higher cost of living who make probably less than us and the wife stays home and it's fine. I admire that. I can't be that. I can't live like that, where I have to scrape for every penny. I have one set of friends who live very minimally and are more happy for it. I've decided that I don't want to live like that, though I admire them in many ways. I like keeping my house warm (though I always turn it down when no one's in it) in the winter and occasionally running an a/c on uber humid days. I like having lamb and duck that I got for good prices at Aldi. I like knowing that I am helping my soon-to-be husband do what he wants to do (and is phenomenally good at). God gave him a great gift of intellect (which makes for very annoying arguments on my end) and an even greater gift of desire to serve the Church with it. I am proud to be able to help in in that, even though he will probably never make enough for me to be able to even work part time. We both like living comfortable lives. Some people would think I'm a monster for saying it. I know it sounds like I'm sacrificing my children for the sake of comfort, but that's not the case at all. Keep reading.

2. James has basically a part time job. Seriously. We hope to be able to pawn off (with pay, off course) the young kids to a friend while James is teaching. Working at a basically Catholic private school, we could have our older kids go there free and James could take care of them during the day. I don't think I would necessarily be sacrificing them by doing this.

3. I need the health insurance. James' job offers no benefits to family members. He doesn't even get dental or vision for himself. I have serious health issues that need to be addressed regularly and are expensive. I have to have health insurance. With my preexisting condition(s) insurance for me would be somewhere around $500 a month with a pretty high deductible. I get a great health insurance through my work where I even get a Health Savings Account (they put the money toward my deductible in every month, so I basically don't have to pay for health expenses). Best of all, if I don't use the money in my HSA, I can keep it forever (or at least for a long time)! I've heard that there are people at my work who have $8,000 and more in their HSA that's just built up over time! There are also some other pretty sweet benefits, too, where I am enrolled in company stock (no idea how it works), ect. It's pretty sweet, and I really wouldn't want to give that up by even going part time.

That last one is the one that really gets me. My dreams of being a stay at home mom are basically crushed by my health. Oh well, I'd probably be a really bad stay at home mom anyway...Maybe in like 20 years when I'm fully vested in my stock and hopefully have tons of money in my HSA I'll be able to retire (you know, when I wont need to stay at home for the kids anymore...)

Honestly, I'm just so grateful that we're able to start out like this. Neither James nor I expected me to be doing this well, and both of us in jobs that we basically like. I'm too thankful for it to complain about what's not even an issue yet.

...though I still think I'm going to be a terrible mother.


  1. Is it appropriate for me to offer empathy here? *hug*

    If you do have children you can feel free to drop them off at my place. (Provided we continue to live in the same city and all.)

  2. Stop being so hard on yourself. I know many great moms who work outside the home and don't homeschool, and a couple of awesome stay at home dads. You have to do whatever will work best for your family and not worry about what others will think.

    God has put these specific challenges in front of the two of you because they are what you need. Accept them and learn from them. Stop declaring yourself to be bad at something you've never even tried. That's just fear talking, and fear is never "of God."

    P.S. I'm one of the moms who would ask you if you plan to keep working, not to judge but because I'm curious. Most homeschooling moms I know are the same way. The judgy ones? You don't want to be friends with them anyway,