When I tell people I am a teacher, their usual first response is "wow!" When I tell them I want to be a stay at home mom, their automatic response is, "well, at least you get the summers off." While I couldn't agree more, it does bug me a bit.
I want to stay at home with my daughter. I want to love her. I want to raise her. I want to be there when she needs discipline, when she doesn't feel good, when she is having a hard day. I want to take care of cleaning the house, cooking dinner, managing our finances. I want to "socialize" my daughter by setting up play dates with other children. I want to explore everything she does and open the world to her so that she can learn.
I don't want her in daycare. Or full time preschool. Or in any kind of institution. When the time comes for school, I am there, with her in tow. At that time, I want to help the teacher... with parties, with prep, with field trips, with (cough cough) grading. I want my daughter, and any other children I have to know that they have back-up, that they can count on me. I want to be able to consider fostering children, something I can't really do if I work outside the home.
I drives me crazy that there is such a fight against this. It drives me crazy that women I know feel like it is somehow below them to care for their families. It drives my crazy that moms out there are ashamed to say, "yes, I am a stay at home mom!"
I am blessed to be a teacher, to at least have periods of weeks with my daughter. I am blessed to be able to go part time, for right now. Although, that may end next year. I am even blessed to have a group of family and friends who watch Penelope right now. I just wish that our society would see the value of motherhood. I wish they would stop trying to push mothers to leave their child in a daycare center, and I wish that there was some way, any way, that I could do this full time.