Tuesday, March 10, 2009

Just a Stay At Home Mom...


So here I am, the stay at home mom to 3. I've been out and about to several soirees recently and I am finding that I am most often thought of as a nobody because I stay at home. I often find people when introducing me saying something along the lines of....This is Michelle, so and so's wife. As they reach out to shake my hand their mouth opens, but then the introducer says something like....Oh, she's JUST a stay at home mom. This has happened more than once, more than twice...many times. It actually has me thinking that not only has it become me, but I have allowed it to become me. I'm an artist, I work hard on my jewelry and yet, I don't speak about it as much as I should. I'm never given the chance. Once they hear SAHM, their eyes glaze over, they seem to want to get out of there as fast as possible. I'm often left wondering if I have puke on my shirt? A dirty diaper in my pocket? A pacifier in between my teeth? What makes me so uninteresting before i've even said a word? The WHAT DO YOU DO question has often times become a question that makes me cringe. Maybe I should just start introducing myself? Just walk right up to people and say hello first! Get that word in, let them know me a bit before they judge me. If only they knew Stay at home mom, pretty much meant never at home mom. I'm far from super mom, but I try hard and I love what I do, I love the mix of work that I do on my shop and with my childrens lives. I may not be the most fascinating person at the party, but I am in fact a person. So hello blogging world, I'm Michelle, Artist and not-so-perfect mom.

10 comments:

Keys and Memories said...

Love the pic!! I had a completely different picture in my mid of what you looked like so it is always nice to see a face behind the name :)

sassypackrat said...

I often feel that way too even around family members. Apparently I'm introduced as and talked about as someone who just sell things on ebay. And yes I work from home to be there for my kids. Why do those facts make me not an interesting and worth while person? I've started introducing myself to people this way "I'm a Graphic Designer who has her own stationery line that I happen to sell on ebay and my own website!" Darn it!
And you are a fabulous jewelery designer with an international clientele who works from home to nurture and support her children. Work it girl!

jeni@pnkgeeni said...

I hate the "What do you do" question. I have no idea what to answer with.

Chigirl said...

rrrrrgh! I'm right there with you! I've always worked independently, which apparently means unemployed to most people! I feel like I'm always trying to explain myself to people. It's so frustrating to feel like you have to defend yourself just because you don't fall into a "normal" job category. And why do people put so much importance on what you do? It's always the first thing they ask. Why not What's your favorite color? Thanks for the great post!:)

Julie said...

I so totally feel ya there! and YAY for all the imperfect moms!

Southern Lady's Vintage said...

What a honor it is to be a Mother. And the fact that you have chosen to stay at home to nurture and care for your children in my opinion is a blessing for your family. Please don't ever let anyone make you feel that you are unimportant or a nobody. There is nothing farther than the truth. There is a great value and pride in that of being a homemaker and mother.

Kala Pohl Studio said...

And you are beautiful:):)

Authoritaters said...

get 'em before they get you!

Ashley Pahl Design Studio said...

I deal with the same thing Michelle. The "what do you do" question is just as annoying as "what are you majoring in?" and "What are you going to do with that degree?"

Since becoming a mother in October I haven't really had the opportunity to deal with this situation in its entirety, but I know it is coming, and it has sort of happened with family members.

I gave up a LOT to be what I am now. I gave up a research position in grad school to be a mother and do work on my stationery. But I'm just the unemployed, SAHM to everyone else. I don't regret this decision, and who knows, maybe when my baby is grown and I have more time, I'll go back to grad school.

I say, when you meet new people next time and they ask what you do, say "I'm a jewelry designer" and hand them your card. If someone says "she's a stay at home mom" first, say, "Yes, I do raise my children myself, and I also have my own line of jewelry" and hand them your card!

Raising our children is exhausting, important, fulfilling, and a privilege that not many women get to have these days. How lucky our kids are to spend their days with their own mother, instead of a care facility or sitter.

This isn't to say that I don't fully respect women who choose to go back to work after having babies... I'm just saying that raising children AND being an artist is just as important, hard work, and serious as other jobs.

Okay, rant over :)

Ashley Pahl Design Studio said...

I deal with the same thing Michelle. The "what do you do" question is just as annoying as "what are you majoring in?" and "What are you going to do with that degree?"

Since becoming a mother in October I haven't really had the opportunity to deal with this situation in its entirety, but I know it is coming, and it has sort of happened with family members.

I gave up a LOT to be what I am now. I gave up a research position in grad school to be a mother and do work on my stationery. But I'm just the unemployed, SAHM to everyone else. I don't regret this decision, and who knows, maybe when my baby is grown and I have more time, I'll go back to grad school.

I say, when you meet new people next time and they ask what you do, say "I'm a jewelry designer" and hand them your card. If someone says "she's a stay at home mom" first, say, "Yes, I do raise my children myself, and I also have my own line of jewelry" and hand them your card!

Raising our children is exhausting, important, fulfilling, and a privilege that not many women get to have these days. How lucky our kids are to spend their days with their own mother, instead of a care facility or sitter.

This isn't to say that I don't fully respect women who choose to go back to work after having babies... I'm just saying that raising children AND being an artist is just as important, hard work, and serious as other jobs.

Okay, rant over :)

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