“Just you wait and see.” My mom always said that to me growing up (and boy, did I roll my eyes at her when she’d say it). Any time I started talking about my career goals and how motherhood would fit into my career (you know, not the other way around), she’d always tell me things will change once I become a mom . . . Just you wait and see.
I’m not going to lie, growing up, I didn’t want to be like my mom. (And Mom, if you’re reading this, hold on for a second. I’m going somewhere with this.) My mother was a stay-at-home mom, and let me tell you, that life didn’t appeal to me.
I didn’t imagine myself sitting at home all day wiping boogers off the walls, cleaning the moldings, or dusting my light fixtures. (To be honest, I still don’t do any of that.) I didn’t see myself giving up my dreams so I could cart kids to soccer practice. Sure, I planned on being a mom, but that wasn’t all I wanted to be. I sure didn’t want it to be my only identity.
It also didn’t help that my parents divorced when I was a teenager, and I had to watch my mom scramble to get her feet firmly on the ground. She didn’t have a college degree, and she had very few job skills. Her resume, for the most part, read “Mom.” She was completely reliant on my dad. Any time she wanted to buy something, it was his money. Any time she wanted to do something for herself, it was a conversation with her husband to basically ask permission. She held a part-time job and had no way to fend for herself. And so, when I saw what she went through divorcing my dad, I thought, That will never be me.
Nope. Not gonna happen. I was going to go to college. I had big dreams. I wanted a fancy career. No man was going to tell me what to do. (Typical millennial upbringing, am I right?) And that’s what I did, darn it. I worked my butt off and with every promotion, came bigger dreams. And there was my mother telling me, “Well, when you become a mom, you’ll want to slow down then. Just you wait and see.”
I blew it off. I can be a mom and have a career. I can do it all. I won’t be reliant on my husband. I’m a woman, hear me roar.
Then the day came one fall morning—the day God made me a mother. That little baby boy completely stole me away. Right then and there, I knew I’d walk through fire for him—I am his mama. Okay, Mom, you were right.
Gosh, I hate it when she’s right. I’m glad she was right about this, but you know what I mean. Moms just know. They know it all. They know their kids, and she sure knew I was destined to be a mom. She knew it would change me in ways I never dreamed it would.
So the career dreams disintegrated. The number one priority was no longer a promotion. It was figuring out how to work less so I could be home with my son more. Then after two years of working-mom life, the day came when I finally decided to stay home with my little ones (wiping boogers off the walls, of course). So, here I am . . . just like my mom.
I’m a stay-at-home mom which means my husband brings home the bacon and I fry it. He brings home the money and I spend it (on the bills and groceries of course). My days are no longer spent in an office with hundreds of people needing me for something. Instead, I spend my day with toddlers who are way more demanding than any multitude of adults.
Sure, I still have dreams, but they’ve changed now. Instead of my dreams coming first and motherhood somehow fitting around it all, those dreams now come second. The kids are first because, well, that’s what happens when you become a mom. You put them and their needs above your own. I may accomplish those dreams someday, but if not, I’m already living my greatest dream come true—right here in my own home.
And after all this time, I can now proudly say, I’m just like my mom.