All stay-at-home moms (SAHM) are working 24/7. But for the benefit of identifying which is which, I'll define a work-at-home mom (WAHM) as someone who perform tasks other than what is required of her as a home maker. This person may be working for a client or for herself, in the case of business owners. Now that I've defined that, let's get into my story.
Before I left the corporate world, I'd been wanting to become a WAHM instead of a SAHM primarily because I felt that staying indoors for 24/7 would bore me to death. Maybe I'm exaggerating. I'd like to think of myself as a wild horse, always wanting to be free-spirited. I hate being encased and doing just the same mundane tasks over again. But when I got married and became a mother, I'd say that wild horse has been tamed (a bit) and became a domesticated equus.
I've been praying a lot to God to show me the path where my skills can be of use to help others while still maintaining my priority - my family. I've had moments when I felt helpless because I envied other moms who were able to use their God-given gifts not only to their families but to others, too. Oftentimes before I click the apply button on an online job seeker platform, I've questioned myself - am I good enough? Will my commitment to work eat-up my time for my son? I hardly have free time for myself as a SAHM (sans domestic helper) and now I want to add more tasks on my plate ?
The answer to my prayer came a little over a year. And it was more than I could have hoped for.
When I was in my early 20s, I've volunteered with different organizations, I'm not a specialized-talented person (meaning, I'm a jack-of-all-trades, no specialized skills like sports, medicine, art, writing, or something) so I just used my time and convincing powers to ask some friends to offer their talents in the causes that I support. Little did I know that my innate skills in helping those who help others will be what I'd be doing at the comfort of my own home a decade later.
My work now with the social-enterprise uses my skills in managing their online marketing, customer service, and developing documents. I love working with them because my clients are our very good friends, we support their causes, and it's not too time-consuming (part-time work it is! Woohoo!) - helping me manage work, homeschool, house chores, and being a wife and mother.
So, What's Next?
I know I can take in more clients for a higher pay but for now, spending time with a 3 year old doing pretend play, singing and dancing, creating art pieces, racing cars and exploring the world is of utmost importance. I'm contented to be able to: give service to the people who are actively helping others; answer God's call (to be a hands-on mom), and; spend some "me" time by attending social events (at least once a month to keep me sane) and blog about them. As long as the house is still kept clean, the hubby and the baby are well taken-cared off, the pile of laundry is manageable, and dishes are washed after each meal (or within 2 hours!), I think I'm doing a good job. I've learned to accept that I'm no superwoman but there are still days when I feel overwhelmed by everything that I do at home. When it does happen, I just stop and re-assess which tasks are immediate. More often than not, spending time with the 3 yr-old wins the i-am-an-important-item-on-your-list assessment.
So here I am assessing our schedule and would have to have a homeschool restart, hopefully soon.
My hats are off to other moms who do more work than they can actually handle but still are great moms, wives, and home managers. Kudos to you!