Contemporary discussion seems to always pit the stay at home mom against the working mom. Read about the journey of a former stay at home mom who became a single working mom.
Today’s post is from a local bloggy friend of mine, Alicia from Fun Reviews and Giveaways. We met through MomCentral’s Chick-Fil-A Moms group, when we discovered that we (along with two others) lived in Virginia. Then, we both participated in our local Food Lion Frugal Cookoff. We will soon be promoting, attending, and reviewing a local show of Disney Live! Pirate & Princess Adventure. I have a feeling this is going to be a fun friendship. Take it away Alicia…
I’m Alicia and I own the blog Fun Reviews and Giveaways. I was asked to write a post about being a single working mom.
I am separated from my husband as of June 2013, and in August I got a job in a daycare facility working 25 – 27 hours a week.
My kids had never been inside of a daycare until I got my job, and they’re 5 and 6 years old.
Can you describe the transition from being a stay at home mom to being a working mom?
It seems that having a supportive family, co workers, and friends is imperative for the success of you and your children. What types of things do you lean on them for?
I lean on my family and friends for prayer and help when it comes to what I should do in terms of divorce vs not, and 9 times out of 10 the answer is clear that unless he shows a drastic change, the best solution is divorce. I hate divorce, but I don’t feel like I have ever had a good marriage so I find it best for kids and I to follow through with it in June.
You said “I loved the life as a stay at home mom. I taught my kids the majority of what they know now.” – how do you try to keep some of that learning going?
As a stay at home mom, I taught my kids a lot of things that they’d need to know for when they begin school. My son started school in fall of 2013 and is doing a lot better with things he had been having issues with learning. I try to spend as much time as I can after work with my kids on the days that I have them and don’t have to go get them from their dad’s house, and I do reading with them in the evening as I can. My son has a reading log that he has to do through each month, so once we have filled the page up with the books we have read, I send the paper in with him and his teacher checks it off and he gets a prize.
What did you love the most?
My favorite thing about being a stay at home mom was the time I was able to spend with them all day long, playing with their toys with them, as well as making learning fun for when they start school, as well as just the bonding time I had with them from being home all day / evening with them.
Have you continued any traditions or routines that you used to follow with the kids (when you were a stay at home mom)?
I have tried to keep the same routine with my kids when it comes to reading, watching movies together, and doing fun things as we are able to as a family.
How has your confidence grown in being financially independent?
My confidence has grown a bit in myself knowing that I am completely able to take care of my kids and I financially without the help of my husband. Of course, I don’t have the expense of rent or bills yet, as I am trying to save money to be able to get an apartment eventually so right now I am making monthly payments on our vehicle and setting aside money for our needs and apartment fund. It’s nice to have a job, but I wish I was still able to be a stay at home mom but know that isn’t possible right now or anytime soon, so I make the best of it and leave the rest to God.
A Typical Day
My son is in kindergarten so he goes to the daycare from school until I get off work at 5:30 on my days, and on his dad’s days he leaves with him right after 2:45 or so. My daughter is in the pre k class at the daycare, so she mainly just goes with me when I go to work at noon, unless I am needed earlier. It’s not easy, but it’s doable. At least both of my kids love their teachers and the kids they interact with there for the most part. I work in the infant room with ages 7 weeks – 9 months old.
Plans for the Future
I live with my parents, sister, and my kids of course. I have only worked 10 months out of 6 years until I had to get a job in 2013 to support kids and I. I loved the life as a stay at home mom. I taught my kids the majority of what they know now. It wasn’t an easy adjustment. In November, I put a down payment on a 2001 Nissan Sentra car and I make payments each month on it until it is paid off. It’s kind of nice to say I pay for my own car for the first time, not relying on someone else to. I am hoping that by 2015 we can get an apartment near my son’s school if I can find a full time job by then. I am hoping to find one in August after my daughter starts school. I am not the best at budgeting money, but I am going to have to be to save enough money for an apartment for us. I have a very supportive family, co workers, and friends.
Find Alicia at Fun Reviews and Giveaways, Pinterest, and Google+.
Original Photo Credit: D. Sharon Pruitt
Eschelle Westwood (@Eschelle) says
kudos to her WOW hard choice but a totally understandable and necessary one. I hope that he isn’t abusive to the kids, in these situations I don’t normally hear of the kids being able to have contact with the father/mother.
Eschelle – This is my guest post. No, he has never been abusive to my kids. I have sole custody which means they live with me and we share legal custody to do with doctor / ER visits, schooling and daycare. He gets them 2x a week and every other weekend. It’s tough but I have to abide by the agreement til our court date when I can change it in March. He only has 1 conviction right now so the agreement was he and I agreeing to, not judge ruling.
I left and kids and I are happier now since having left and living with my family. I work to take care of us and do the best I can as a mom to make sure they have all the needs and wants they need to live on and be content. Life is so much less stressful mostly since June.
Prayers are most appreciated 🙂
Amanda Love says
Sometimes the decision is taken out of our hands especially where our kids are concerned. You did the right thing. You don’t want your kids growing up in an unhealthy environment filled with abuse whether it’s you or anyone else. I applaud you going out and taking care of your family. Something that some women don’t do. They would prefer to sit at home and collect welfare etc. You’re a strong woman and I know you’ll make your kids proud.
Thanks Amanda, I agree. I knew I needed to get a job to provide income for us since I know he wasn’t going to once I left. I am going to teach my kids about respect and why it’s important to respect others. They are young now, but will appreciate it later.
Michelle F. says
Awesome for you on gaining your independence and getting a job. I am a stay at home mom and want to eventually go back to teaching when my daughter is in school. I know it is going to be hard to leave my little one but I know it’s doable.
Lisa JOnes says
Good For You Getting Out And Getting A Job You’lle Feel A lot Better About Yourself!
Kerry Cairns says
I know that going from being a SAHM to a working mom isn’t easy. I’ve been there and done that, but with a great support system, it helps! Kudos to you! You’re setting such a wonderful example for your kids and it something that you may not be directly “teaching” them, but they’re learning!
This seems like search a hard choice, but she seems strong and like a wonderful mother! Thanks for sharing!
It definitely was not an easy choice to make. I am so thankful for my family and friends who have been there for me and my kids through it. Their support means a lot. My kids love the daycare i work at. They are definitely still learning =)
Amanda Beachum says
That’s tough. We can only do the best we can with what we’ve got. It would be a big help to my family if I were working right now but my son needs me at home with him (epilepsy and learning issues). It’s never easy being a mom and you never know when your life might change. At the end of the day, all that really matters is that your kids know they are safe and loved.
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Randy Jerome says
Thanks for your interesting content! I think being around people that share your same interests and can provide lasting friendships is underrated. When people age it can be really helpful to be around those who are like-minded. When I retire this is something I would love to do, especially if there is a golf course.