Staying at home enables me to teach my kids the importance of slowness. I could never stop to let me son watch an inactive excavator for 45 mins… just let him hang on the anticipation of the nearby workers possibly starting it up.
Court them through boredom and frustration and anger and sadness. Watch them in moments of triumph and glory and happiness. All of it. I truly don’t want to miss a thing.
I could never, not in the same ways, teach them the ready immovability of relationship with another person. What that looks like. Feels like. How to be available when it’s inconvenient. Sure, a new car or a more accommodating house would be nice but is it worth working and putting my kids in care? For me, no.
Your life organizes itself around a fundamental concern (sex, money, etc) – and my concern is my children.
For me, staying at home with my kids is a no-brainer. Because of my childhood, I feel like we need the extra time and the extra care to make up for everything that I went without. Most parents do not have a roadmap – but many have at least an outline. For me, I have had to start from complete scratch. And on top of that, learn to reparent myself. I’ve been able to do that while I raise them, alongside them, and it’s a very special thing.
I don’t have extended family to help raise my children – family that is safe anyway. I also believe that I am the only person uniquely equipped to help my children navigate issues that they may have inherited from me, generationally or epigenetically. There’s no way in hell I’m entrusting my kid’s fate and heath and wellbeing in the hands of another person.
I want my kids to have grit but I also hope things are a bit easier on them… that they feel a real sense of family and support throughout their lives. It is, after all, the only thing that truly matters.