I started babysitting when I was 14, became a cashier when I was 16, and kept right on working. I loved making money and being able to spend it. I also always had a budget; I made enough money to cover my bills and spent the rest. Then I met my husband and we started saving for a house, got married, saved for a bigger house, then got pregnant. This is where my lifestyle finally changed.
We discussed our plan for the future and we decided it was best that I stay home with our son. We based this decision on our comfort level with daycare facilities and our desire to have the biggest influence on our kids’ learning and development from birth. It was a big choice to make, especially knowing I was giving up my financial independence. This caused me some stress and anxiety, starting with maternity-leave pay.
It was hard for my husband and me to see eye to eye mostly because he saw it as our money and I saw it as his money! When I was not bringing in income I felt guilty spending over $100 on groceries or buying myself a T-shirt. It bothered me enough that I decided to earn my own income again, so I opened a home daycare at the same time I got pregnant with our second child. This was not the greatest decision, looking back. You can read more about what happened at Ottawa Valley Moms here.
Although I was making my own money again, I was missing out on freedom, happiness, sleep and energy. So I went back to square one: not working. I enjoyed it more this time around and focused on our growing family. Now I stay home with both my daughter and son and enjoy each day. We plan crafts, go for walks with our dogs, go to the park, and explore different things to do in our city, including museums and gymnastics. We also often meet up with other moms for play dates.
I am really glad I chose to stay home with my kids. As they grow older, I am truly appreciating the time I get to spend with them each week, no matter how tough it gets some days!