This week the family made a big change. My youngest two boys started "school". I have been mulling over the option of part-time daycare for months and months. It's been a REALLY difficult decision.
Us poor mothers and the expectations, judgements, and guilt we must endure when it comes to the daycare decision. I know I am guilty of passing judgements. When a woman tells me she's a stay-at-home mom and doesn't do any part-time job or volunteer work I'm guilty of thinking "What does she DO all day?" ....psh!....How silly of me! I know what she does all day, and it's hard work! Or when I meet a woman who works full time and has been dropping off her child at a daycare center five days a week since the kid was 6 weeks old I think "Jeez, are you more interested in living your more expensive lifestyle than in raising your own child?" Unless, of course, she's a single mother raising her kids without help (the most SUPREME mortals in existence!!!) ....It is so wrong of me to judge, and my prejudices have clouded my own outlook of my roll as a mother in juxtapose to my desires as my own person. Every woman (and man) makes this decision based on very personal situations.
For many parents, daycare isn't even an option. Either they wouldn't be able to find a job that could even pay enough that there would be anything left after the cost of daycare. Or they are absolutely dedicated to taking advantage of the opportunity to be home with their kids. For me, it was a combination of both. I've always taken care of my kiddos during the day, always been a stay at home mom, even while running my business. I've been able to barely pull it off with the help of my husband's flexible schedule and my parents and in-laws who are so happy to spend time with the kids weekly. But I finally realized that what I was trying to do weekly was still just impossible and it was begining to wear me down. I've started to notice a kind of depression or lack of inspiration. When I saw that my time with the kids had begun to feel boring and I ran out of energy to make adventures for us, I blamed the distraction and stress of my business and thought about closing down the shop for a while. That idea made me sad beyond words. I ruled it out. I had to. Creating fuels my soul. There is no substitute. Also, FINALLY, my business is thriving in a way that could actually pay me well! This lead me to the hypothesis that maybe if I make more room in my life for my art and business, I can actually accomplish more as a mother and homemaker too.
Mothers are the guardians of little fragile hearts. But firstly, we are the keepers of our own souls. Of course sacrifice is the main ingredient in parenting. But souls must be nourished daily, otherwise the most important gifts from us to our children (laughter, inspiration, passion) will run dry.
So two 7 hour days each week they will be in someone else's care while I work in my studio at home. Just one week in and I can already feel the fog of chaos lifting and the bags under my eyes fading. And something else wonderful is happening, I'm feeling closer to Makai and Solomon than I have ever felt. They say distance makes the heart grow fonder.....
I am so increadibly lucky to be where I am. I am thankful for my husband who is so hard-working and so supportive of my dreams. Thankful for the frugal simple sensibilities that my parents instilled in me that help me focus on the non-material things and live cheaply so there is time to follow little inspirations. So thankful for the passions I have that make me so happy.