As you know, I hung up my stay at home mom cape. I love my job. I might love it more than a mom of six should. If I am totally honest, being a stay at home mom was something I did, but not necessarily something I loved. It was a bit like wearing uncomfortable, yet practical shoes. It was absolutely the best thing I ever did for my family. It was also the hardest thing I did.
I’m a smart, savvy, college educated woman. In college I aspired to working in public relations. I never really quite got there, because soon after we married I had a son, and then another, and then another and another. Four boys. True blessings. Then, baby boy went off to kindergarten and I began to wistfully peer at job listings. And then God put my career aspirations on hold. Again. With a set of twin daughters. Daughters that are full of sugar, but mostly spice.
I threw myself back into stay at home motherhood headlong.
However, I was not feeling the same sense of accomplishment that I felt when cleaning up after four little boys. While keeping up a house was challenging, it was not the challenge I was looking forward to. And, with college for the oldest looming, and the perfect job opportunities presenting themselves, I happily hung up my yoga pants and donned a conservative black blazer.
Since going back to work, running the household has gone back to being a team efffort between Dakotapastor and I. And, I am realizing that some of the things I was trying to juggle, he just naturally does better.
One example is household finances. Money stresses me out. Making sure there is money at the end of the month was giving me major anxiety. Couple that with my rather unorthodox bookkeeping methods, I was happy to turn the checkbook and all of the bill paying back to my beloved. He has absolutely no emotional attachment to money and can just balance things out easily.
Dakotapastor also manages home maintenance better than I do. I was content to ignore a leaky faucet, or work around less than efficient parts of our aging house. I hate dealing with electricians and plumbers. I’m pretty sure that they think I am an idiot, and I never can seem to communicate exactly what needs doing. So, since I went to work, Dakotapastor has spent his weekday off welcoming various service people into our home to fix everything that was sagging. And, since he also manages the finances, this does not stress him out nearly as much as it stressed me out!
He has also taken on the role of cooking dinner many nights. I plan the menus (actually eMeals plans them, but that is another post) and I make sure all of the ingredients are prepped and ready to go for him to get a hot meal on the table by 5:30. The kids swear he is a better cook than I am. . .but I think it is because he claims to add “secret” ingredients.
I suspect that if he did not love being a pastor so much that he would make a delightful stay at home dad. He has the energy for the task that I had more of 17 years ago. By the time it is all said and done, we will be actively parenting for THIRTY TWO years! That is a full-fledged career, people! I’m certainly glad that I have a helpmate who is willing to step in and work by my side. Because, the truth is, I don’t want to have to run our household by myself.
So, is he really a better stay at home parent than me? Maybe. Does it really matter? What does matter is that our children are well loved and well cared for. I do take great pride in the way we are raising our children and for the most part, I think our household runs smoothly. Things could be neater, and we could always use more space, but really, I have no complaints. . . and I hope Dakotapastor doesn’t either.
He is saving his complaints for men’s clothing manufacturers. But that is a different post for a different day!