I have been misplaced by a weak economy – trapped in a small house with three children, stripped of my self-worth and blind folded to any clear direction. Though I have been a stay-at-home mom for nine years, five of them have been spent trying to build a career. Unlike most moms I didn’t choose to be a stay-at-homer; I was cast into the role when the $800 a month daycare bill was pushing us toward the poorhouse. Since landing this role I have been fighting to eke out a career while balancing the identity stealing motherly duties. I always find it necessary to add how I do love my children; however, I want to be able to stand on my own two feet if my husband’s paycheck was no longer available. I also want to contribute financially but daycare and gas would consume the already measly paycheck and I would be on the road back to the poorhouse. It is a vicious cycle created by a recession.
I thought I was the only SAHM misplaced by the economy and left yearning for success, until I visited some parenting forums. Seems I am not the only one the poor economy has trapped behind the doors of our home. Maybe this explains the explosion of mom bloggers and at-home businesses. Misplaced moms have had to invent creative ways to keep their identity and re-establish self-worth. When economists look back on this recession it should be referred to as the “Entrapment Era”. The time when the economy made for a different type of SAHM and the role was redefined. We are no longer the women who stay at home for fear of others raising our children but the women who stay at home because we can’t afford others to raise them.
I don’t want to get stuck behind the SAHM label, where I am expected to pull out a tiny magazine and talk my victim into buying their perfect shade of foundation. The economy is scary enough but to know I may wake up an empty nester peddling makeup samples is terrifying. Though the economy is weak it still has the power to choose my quality of life and slap an unwanted assumption to my name. How do you fight something that even at its weakest is strong enough to back you in a corner?
I may have to be in this corner but I refuse to cower in it. As long as the economy continues to try to beat me down I will continue to throw punches until one of them delivers a KO, allowing me to gain the advantage and go from misplaced misfit to a moneymaking matriarch.
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