When mommy chooses not to return to work
The birth of a first child can turn one’s life upside down more than we would ever imagine. When it comes time to return to work, some women opt to switch careers and become a stay-at-home mom, instead. Below, one mother explains how she came to make that very same decision.
Choosing another path
“I work 24 hours a day, seven days a week. I never get a break, day or night. And I don’t have any colleagues to help me get through the rush,” says Julie, a professional who became a stay-at-home mom following the birth of her first daughter, almost five years ago.
Like most women, Julie planned to return to work following a year-long maternity leave. “I really thought that I would ease back into my job, even though it pained me to think that my daughter would spend her days in daycare.” By visiting different daycares, Julie realized that the life that awaited her wasn’t for her. “I couldn’t resign myself to spending only a few hours with my daughter after work.”
Telecommuting and freelancing efforts
Julie was nevertheless passionate about her job, working long hours and aspiring to move up the corporate ladder. “I asked my boss whether I could work from home or come in four days a week instead of five, but neither was possible.”
After managing to have her maternity leave extended by a few months (without pay), Julie was offered the promotion she’d always wanted. Her head said “yes”, but her heart said “no”. “I told my employer over the phone, ‘I can’t believe I’m about to say this to you, but I decline your offer.’”
In order for her skills not to fall to the wayside, but to also supplement her income, Julie took on freelance work. She quickly realized that working from home with a baby in one arm was much too difficult. “I realized that I couldn’t be fulfilled in anything other than an office job.”
As a result, Julie put her creativity to good use in her everyday life: she cooks different dishes at every meal; turns birthday celebrations into rituals; and fashions all the decorations, as well as many of her girls’ toys, herself.
Julie is fulfilled by her career as a stay-at-home mom… but she does wish it paid better!
We want your feedback: after the birth of your child, did you go back to work or did you choose to be a stay-at-home mom? Share your story with us in the Comments section below!