A Worthy Career....


There was a great piece by Geraldine Lynagh in the Irish Independent newspaper 2 days ago, about working mums who gave it all up for their children  which ponders on the belief held by some that you need an excuse to give up your career for your kids.

Geraldine rightly poses the question: 'Why is an excuse necessary at all?'

She gives examples of  some high profile career women who felt that people were unwilling to accept their family-based reasons for leaving their <paid> jobs behind them. The article then went on to ask two women why they made that decision and how it worked out for them; one of whom was the fabulous Lorraine Keane and her story  and the other was... um.... well.... me and mine!


Not only did we make it into a national newspaper 
but we got a rather nice photo too!
                                     

For personal reasons my story had to be diluted somewhat, but basically my fundamental reason for leaving my job was not only because I felt I was missing out, but because I felt my son was too.

I don't feel guilty about being a Stay-at-home-Mum but I will admit that the decision to leave was not easy. I honestly believed that going out to work on a job-sharing basis was my 'me-time' that gave me the best of both worlds and allowed me time spent in adult company. Therefore I was initially reluctant to give it up!

To be honest there are some careers where it is perfectly acceptable for a mum (or dad) to give up work to care for their children, no raising of inquisitive eyebrows whatsoever. It saves the company money, you see, and besides some work colleagues can view job-sharing/part-time mums  in a less than favourable light.

Ultimately I made my decision very quickly and have not regretted it for one moment. I  recently wrote about this pivotal decision and my thoughts on being Home Alone and of how I feel the role of the SAHM ( and Dad)  is viewed in this country.

I also recently wrote about the question you should never ask a Stay-at-home-Mum, aka: What Jazzy Does all day!

Not all contributions to our society can be measured in financial or economic terms. Which leads me to ask a question of my own....

Why is staying home to rear one's children not considered a career in it's own right?

One should never feel, or be made to feel, guilty or less-worthy, for making the decision to stay home with their children. Nor should anyone feel bad having made such a decision, then feeling the need to do something other than child-rearing and housework in any spare time. That's called me-time and everyone, whether in the paid or non-paid work force, deserves that.

Besides, some stay-at-home-mum's me time can turn into a new career, worked around family needs, or be of benefit to local communities or causes.

Speaking of which, you can support iPhones4Autism.ie, the campaign I contribute to in my spare time, by donating your old iPhone  if you have recently upgraded! You can even send me any old mobile phones you, your  work colleagues or fellow SAHMs, have lying around! Any donated iPhones will be given to children with Autism (and Special Needs) to assist with communication and all other phones will be pooled and used to avail of  Irish Autism Action's Mobile Phone Recycling scheme.

Please support if you can.

Many thanks.

xx








18 comments:

  1. Wow! Congrats on being featured in the newspaper (and that is indeed a lovely photo)! I completely agree that raising/rearing children is a career in its own right, whether you SAH or not. Kudos to you! xo

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  2. @Tanya Savko: Thank you! I of course agree that rearing children whether staying-at-home or not is a career but the newspaper article and my blog posts are written from the POV that the SAHM can be looked down upon, or look down upon themselves, for making such a choice...

    Thanks for your valued comment :-)

    xx Jazzy

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  3. @irishminx: Cheers!

    Thanks for commenting :-)

    xx Jazzy

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  4. Lovely! I read the article the other day when Bluesky posted a link. Congrats to you and your wonderful son.
    I think that doing what one feels is right is more important than anything else. I knew that staying at home with my kids was the right decision for us. YES! It is a career! One that is 24/7 365 days a year..I do not regret having stayed home -but I must say, as they are now older and all in school full time...I am happy to be working again-BUT,I wouldn't have gotten the job that I have if it weren't for having stayed at home with the kids..and blogging about it! Best of both worlds. :))

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  5. Gorgeous photo! I do honestly think that being a SAHM is a hugely important career in it's own right, not that too many others share that view, but I think it is! :)

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  6. @Kathleen: Thank you! See, you re-invented yourself and your 'me time' became your new career! Turning what you love doing into a paid job that fits around your family is fantastic. To get paid to blog or do Social media....... I can but dream!

    @BavarianSojourn: Thank you too! I'm inclined to agree with you and that's why I've written 3 posts on this subject!

    Just to clarify, I absolutely believe that everyone should make the choice (if they can) to do whatever suits them and their family best. I spell that out in my 'Home Alone' post which is why I didn't go into it here.

    Thanks so much for your comments here and all the lovely shares, 'likes' and comments on facebook over the past few days:-)

    xx Jazzy

    xx Jazzy

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  7. So exciting to see you featured in a newspaper.. great photo. :)
    Although I own a small school for children, I am still a stay at home mum. I agree with you, no one should be made to feel guilty whatever their choice. Great post, I enjoyed reading it. x

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  8. Well said Jazzy. I'm mainly a SAHM though I have done some very part time jobs during the years as a way of getting a bit of extra income and having a break. For my family, it was more important for me to be at home and I don't regret it at all. Spending time with my children and nurturing them has been the biggest job that I could ever do in life. No 'paid' work could ever replace this for me and yet people make me feel worthless including the dam British government who seem to be on a mission to send every parent into paid work. Like you said what we do in our homes is not valued properly and there is the assumption that going to work is best all round. What the government is not encouraging is freedom of choice to do what is right for our families. Not everyone can or wants to go to work but that doesn't mean we are inferior to those who do. Deb

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  9. I gave up on a possible position with an organization, working full time at the office everyday while DD was at childcare. I wanted to be available (and had to be being a single mother) to pick her up or stay home with her if she was ill. I couldn't stand the thought of what shall I do panic every time there was no childcare for a day or DD was sick. I also wanted to go to nursery parties and help with outings. Thus I've carved out a basket of work that I mostly do at home (with one in-college teaching position for 4 hour/week locally). It brings in far less money but our lives are better for it if more frugal.

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  10. @Bright Side of Life: Thanks Di. I didn't know that about you! A lot of women will find something they can do that fits around family life and, to me, that's ideal! I'd love to do something (social media social media SOCIAL MEDIA!)and be paid for it.....sigh.

    @Deb @ Aspie in the family: I totally agree Deb. This job has been the most important one of my life. As I said in the newspaper article 'my son has blossomed' as a result. If only they knew how much of a difference me staying home has made! (I couldn't talk about the ASD etc) The Irish government thinks as little of us as yours does of you, believe me. Personally I blame our Individualisation tax system for pushing more mums out into workforce when there were tons of jobs. Now that a lot these mums are now unemployed there has been no adjustment.

    @Midlife Singlemum: It is especially hard for single mums, some don't have the choice but to work, if they can find a job. Sounds like you made all the right choices, for you and your gorgeous girl. I just know that when she's my boy's age you will look back and be even more happy with your choice ;-)

    Thank you all so much for your valued comments :-)

    xx Jazzy

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  11. Well done on being featured in the newspaper - great picture. I hate the way that application forms will say 'homemaker' ???? How about managing director of the bricks and mortar or foundation of the human race .... SAH motherhood still isn't and should be considered as a proper career. X.

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  12. @Older Mum: Absolutely and how well you put it!Would definitely look great on any CV ;-)

    Thanks for your comment :-)

    xx Jazzy

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  13. As you know I am more of an unwilling SAHM, but even before trying it, I could not understand why it is not valued properly. Happy secure and solvent families - in whatever form - are vital to support every other aspect of society. Saying that 'children are our future' may be a cliche, but that is because it is true!

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  14. That's a lovely photo. Well done on telling your story. I was delighted to be able to stay at home with my children. I wouldn't have wanted anyone else bringing them up.

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  15. @Blue Sky: I totally agree. We should value the contributions we all make to our society...economic AND familial.

    @magnumlady: Yes, that is my choice too. I consider myself lucky to be in the position that I could do this 'job', the most important one I ever had.

    Thanks very much for your comments :-)

    xx Jazzy

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    1. Excellent post, and I couldn't agree more. I am attempting to find another part-time job at the moment for financial reasons, having recently knocked teaching on the head for good. But if I didn't have to, I wouldn't. And I wouldn't feel guilty. SAHMs (and SAHDs) are blessed and doing a brilliant job - the most important one! Have to say though that a female family member (who is wonderful and is generally all-round great) said to me that I needed to work because I'm "too intelligent" to just stay at home. I found it incredibly sad that being 'just a mum' seemingly diminishes your IQ. I don't find that it has at all during my cherished bouts.

      And good on you with your article!! x

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  16. @Beadzoid: I wish you luck in finding a suitable part-time job and hope you are not too disappointed that you've knocked the teaching job on the head. That IS disappointing and a bit worrying. Although part of me can see why someone might think that..... before they think it thorough properly that is! There are so many skills one learns when being a SAHM.... serious multi-tasking and organisation being two. I have become way more computer- literate as a result and really hope to get a job in Social media!

    Thanks so much for commenting :-)

    xx Jazzy

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