So, I wrote that I have been taking a break from blogging....from writing blogs and from reading blogs. I also wrote that I may one day blog about why this break has been good for me. So, I think today's a good day! I'm not sure if I'm "back" but here are some of my latest thoughts.
Many of the blogs I have read, are those of stay-at-home, homeschooling moms. I don't know why that is or what brought me to those blogs. But I do read quite a few blogs of working moms, as well. Over the past few months, I have become increasingly discouraged about certain things in my life. Namely, the fact that I work outside the home, that I don't homeschool my kids.
One thing that I know about myself is that I'm brutally judgemental of myself. And I, way too often, compare myself to other people, thinking that they do ____(fill in the blank) better than I do. I was looking to these blogs, more importantly, to the women who write these blogs, and thinking that I don't measure up. That I'm doing this "mom thing" all wrong...that my children are getting short-changed. That I'm out of God's will for my life, because these Christian women say that if I am not at home, homeschooling my children, then I'm not fulfilling God's plan, I'm not doing what God intended a wife and mother to do.
This was a big deal. It sent me into a bit of a tailspin, affected my relationship with my husband, and made me doubt who I was as a mother.
So I quit. I quit reading their blogs, the ones that told me I was likely sinning against God by holding a teaching job. And I started reading God's word. And do you know what, when I am in God's Word, not other people's blog business, I get clearer answers of what I am supposed to be doing for my family. I now have such a peace about our situation, there has been virtually no stress over the past few weeks, compared to what I felt over this summer, when I wasn't working.
I do firmly believe that God puts godly people in our lives to speak to us, give us insight, affirm our choices, etc. And have had clear evidence of that recently, when dealing with other important decisions. However, I also know that the one true place to find answers in the choices that you have to make is in the Word of God, and that is what I have been doing and it's great.
Now I see that the uncertainty that I was feeling in whether or not I was doing the right thing working outside the home was not a God issue, so much as it was an issue of me feeling judged, judged by people who are Christians, people whose belief systems, for the most part, line up with mine. And that's hard, no matter who you are. There was a time, that I believed that the feeling that I got reading their stong, opinionated, almost-condescending words was the Holy Spirit convicting me and leading me in the way that I should go. But now I realize that if I'm immersed in studying the Word and am not feeling the conviction of the Holy Spirit, then that was not what it was.
Please do not read this and think that I am speaking against SAHMs or homeschooling in any way. Hear me loud and clear when I say that I have great friends and an awesome sister who are at home with their children teaching them. And if that's what God called us to do, we would do it. However, that is not the ONLY way to raise healthy, happy, God-loving, people-respecting children. What I am speaking out against is the condescending, unloving, judgemental attitude that some working moms get from other moms. There are some things in life that are black-and-white, universally wrong for every person...murder, adultery etc. This is NOT one of those issues.
We are all mommas, and working mommas love our babies just as much as SAHMs love theirs (believe it or not, I've seen it argued that we do not). I'm not sure why there is even a "division" between the two, but there is. Wouldn't it be great if we could all be "just moms".
Over the past few weeks, I've settled into the realization that there is but one standard that I have to strive to live up to and that is the one of my God, not that of any "mommy blogger".