Tuesday, June 17, 2008

The Value of Mothering, part II

I've been thinking a lot about my last post, and when I reread it this morning, I realize that in some ways, I got it all wrong. I reduced being a stay-at-home-mom to dollars and cents and a checklist of chores. But I neglected the most important aspect of being a full-time mother. Here's my #1 task, at the core of why I'm home in the first place:

I'm doing more than just feeding, cleaning, laundering, and chauffeuring. I'm shaping a human being. If I chose to drop Aaron off at day care so I could go get a paycheck, I'd be missing out on the chance to be the most influential person in his life. Others might be able to complete certain tasks better than I can (this is most true in the cleaning department! :-) but no one can love Aaron the way I can. Or impart a set a values to him the way I can. Or give him a sense of worth the way I can. I could focus on having a super clean house, cooking gourmet meals, and having a perfectly decorated home, but I'd much rather focus on decorating Aaron's heart. If you need to put a job title on it, then let's just say I'm investing in future human capital.

Many moms, I know, feel that they don't have a choice to work. I'm not trying to make them feel guilty here, but I don't think that raising your children full time is a luxury. A privilege, yes, but not a luxury. We've chosen to sacrifice a lot of things in order to make this work. It sometimes means going without, waiting until later, and making do with what we have. There are lots of things Mike and I would love to be doing with our lives, but we've been entrusted with this new little life, and God is expecting us to take good care of him. Not just keep him clean. Not just dress him well. Not just feed him healthy food. It's my job to shape his soul, and that's the real value of mothering.

1 comment:

Aunt Janet said...

Hey no pictures of Mike and Aaron on their first Father's Day together?

I totally agree with you that Motherhood is a privledge and that you have to sacrifice many things in life to get the opportunity to raise and guide your child. You are doing a great job and are a wonderful mom and role model for Aaron. And Mike is a wonderful father and role model too...didn't want to leave him out as he also help create this very special little boy.

I don't care whether your house is clean or dirty when I visit, I am visiting you guys, not your house!!! A messy house is a lived in house.

Keep up what you are doing and do not ever feel guilty for what you are doing. We can already see the wisdom in Aaron that he may not have if he was spending his time in daycare while you worked. Your sacrifice is and will continue to pay off for you, Mike and Aaron.

P.S. I like you being a SAHM because if you were working then we wouldn't be getting all these adorable pictures of Aaron.