Thursday, May 3, 2012

Ambitious Homemaker

I remark a lot about how the standard of living in the U.S. is so crazy high. I mean, even growing up "low-income," we had food and clothing and shelter, not government-provided, because my mom was an incredibly thrifty woman, my dad was ambitious and diligent in the workforce, and they worked together on a reasonable budget. I can count on one hand the number of times we ate out in a year. I didn't even know cable TV existed. 

Me at three-years-old, living the apartment life with my family of six

Now I'm just so comfortable in my middle-class cocoon that I don't even realize how uncomfortable it actually is. To have a husband I pass between opposite work shifts, our kids acclimated to different caregivers, expectations, and environments, a home that's slept in but not lived in...

And I wonder if I have the guts to take the one-income family leap. I talk a lot about the greatness and importance of stay-at-home parents, but could I give up impulse grocery buys, standard (albeit crappy) health insurance, being a fast food junkie, Amazon prime, and maybe even (gasp/gulp) the dataplan on my cell phone? Would it mean eating oatmeal for breakfast every day, with rice and beans for dinner?

It seems my current job pays me very well to daydream about stay-at-home-mom ambitions. But I wonder if I'd hold onto all those motivational ideas when the paycheck is down time with my husband and play time with our kids. It all sounds so nice, but I'm not sure drive-thrus and Amazon accept that currency.
<><> </> <><></>
Doing the working one-parent bedtime routine (yes, that's fast food and a bath on the table!)