As a child, I have always had ideals about what I wanted my life to look like. I saw the street I lived on; I saw exactly how the trees lined the road and met in the middle. I saw the children, mine, and those in the neighborhood riding their bikes outside my window. I could hear little screams of joy, pain, and triumph, faintly or loudly depending on my proximity to that window. Oh, it was beautiful, that picture that I had stored in my mind’s eye. I saw my house, my spouse, I saw my life. 

My Childhood Dreams Have Materialized

This morning I looked up the street and realized this is the street I had dreamed of, when the kids were allowed to be outside riding with friends and so on; those were the sounds I heard, I still hear those sounds because they are playing among themselves in the backyard. It is amazing what our minds can manifest if we think about our dreams long enough. My life as it is now is a result of what I dreamed it would be and what I worked for. There is no running from that. Where we are today is a sum of all our choices.

Childhood Dreams: I Always Wanted to Be A Stay-at-Home Mom!

One Of My Childhood Dreams Was To Stay-at-home With My Children

This brings me to my choice of staying home with my children. Believe it or not, this has also been my dream to stay at home with them for a period, and here I am, “living the dream.” Today, more women are in the workforce by choice and out of necessity. In the days gone, one income was sufficient to run a home, but it is not always the case today. What bugs me a bit is how my choice has invoked a label of “just a mom” or the way I am introduced; this is Malaika. She has four children. I guess there will always be a label in life, and I have had a few before being “just a mom.”

Growing up, I was the baby of my family; I quite enjoyed that label; it came with so many benefits. Then, there was the label of being the young girl who stole someone’s job; aww well, I guess I was better suited. Next, there was the label of wife, entrepreneur, and the long list continues. I have done the working out of the home bit, the career woman bit; I have migrated to a new country and started from the bottom bit. I have done quite a bit, and now I am staying at home with my children until my two youngest start kindergarten in September 2021. Maybe I am reading too much into “just a mom,” but I do not like how it is reduced to a mundane job.

Childhood Dreams: I Always Wanted to Be A Stay-at-Home Mom!
Took the kids to the office with me one day. "Such fun!"

The Mom Guilt Regardless of Choice

Staying at home is a great sacrifice because I have not necessarily put my dreams on hold, but my personal goals will take longer to complete, and there is some guilt. I have spoken to friends in the workforce, and they have guilt about not being around more for their children. So, it seems, it will always be a tug, a struggle. Am I doing the right thing? Am I making the right decision? A woman trying to get back in the workforce after being away for five years has to explain that gap on her resume. There are many dynamics involved, and I understand them, and still, I stick with my choice. One of my best friends, Kerrin, stayed at home with her children for nine years before getting back into the workforce and now she is running three successful businesses.

What a great example! She motivates me. She makes me feel comfortable with my decision. In fact, she has shown me that taking time off does not mean getting left behind. While I am at home, I am reading and self-improving. I am preparing for my entry back into building my business. I’m not too fond of how I always have to explain my choice. Society puts so much pressure on us women to do it all and be it all. I respect women in the workforce who run successful businesses while still juggling being a wife and mom. I respect women at home who care for little ones with so many demands. I respect and champion all women with their choices because I know there is some guilt associated with each choice.

My Choice Is To Be A Stay-At-Home Mom

Yes, I am Malaika, a mom of four who chooses to stay at home with her young children because that is an available option. My choice. It does not trivialize me to being just a mom or make me less than the awesome moms rocking their labels in the career world, job world, entrepreneur world. My priority at this moment is my family and my mental stability. See, each of us should know what we can carry and what loads we can bear. 

I have completed five cycles in my life, and I know a thing or two about me, so I am doing me. My life is not perfect, but no life on earth is. However, I would not trade it. I love the dynamic that my family and I have at this moment. It will change again, and I am ok with that, and I will be ready when it does. My now is not my forever. I have owned my present while working towards my future and using my past as my guide. I have stopped being hard on myself, and I am enjoying every minute of my journey. My choice is my right, and I am owning it.

Childhood Dreams: I Always Wanted to Be A Stay-at-Home Mom!
Childhood Dreams: I Always Wanted to Be A Stay-at-Home Mom!

Projections For My Future

So, I have started working on my vision board again, setting a new stage for my goals and dreams for my next chapter – the future. My childhood dreams have brought me this far. In this new setting, the kids are older now. The screams are not as intense as they were when the children were young, but they are still there; these will always be there. I can hear music coming from behind Eli’s closed doors. I can hear the girls laughing at funny videos and planning for the weekend.

The trees are now mature. Our street is more private. We have moved to a farm that I have eyed for many years and have converted it into our sanctuary. Winters are beautiful here. The creeks never entirely freeze over; the water is constantly flowing. A few fallen trees have succumbed to the weight of the snow. Each measure of success has been materialized. I am planning my book tour and organizing events for my charities. I am planning workshops to empower women in communities that do not necessarily have all the facilities. This is a worldwide venture. I can hear Brent on the phone negotiating a deal. Life is good. Sadly, in this dream, we still do not have a dog. Bummer, the kids will not be happy.

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6 Replies to “Childhood Dreams: I Always Wanted to Be A Stay-at-Home Mom!”

  1. Today, it seems that people are being labeled more and more. They do not want to give you the credit for everything you do. When daycare costs are now as much as college, it has become very hard for families to work and it ends up being a catch 22. If people would just stop to think about everything that goes into being a stay-at-home mother, maybe they would drop the “she just stays home with the kids” line.

  2. I agree with not liking labels of who we are… that is unless we decide the label and make what we want it to be. BUT, there’s that mom guilt you spoke of. So I think that even if we make our own label we will still have moments where we don’t like it or don’t feel aligned or good with it. I think we need to think fluidly, by having seasons in our life (and our year).

  3. It’s a huge blessing to have the ability and means to stay home with your children. There are some moms that have to go back to work within 6-8 weeks after giving birth. As a male, my hat goes off to all the moms in the world. Being a mom is a full-time 24 hrs job and it’s not easy. You are awesome!!

    1. It is such a huge blessing to be home with them. My hats go off to women that only have 6 – 8 weeks maternity. I cannot imagine the sleepless nights and still having to function in the workplace. Being a mom is a full-time job; thank you for recognizing us and the sacrifices we make.

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