I recently posted this quote by James Dobson on my Facebook page: “There is no more important job in the universe than to raise a child to love God, live productively, and serve humanity. How ridiculous that a woman should have to apologize for wanting to fulfill that historic role.” One of the mothers who read this quote was Sue Poll, a mother of four children. She e-mailed me, telling me how much she appreciated Dobson’s thoughts on motherhood. She said (and I am posting it here with her permission):
I love your post about not having to apologize for wanting to be a mom. That is all I have ever wanted growing up. That is what I would tell people when they asked what I wanted to be. It was always to be “a wife and a mom.” I received a few criticisms, but it didn’t bother me. It was a beautiful blessing to find Tim, my husband, who wanted a woman who would be a stay-at-home mom. When we were first married, Tim introduced me to a college friend of his and his wife (he hadn’t seen them in years). The wife asked what was my career and I said to be a mother. She later told Tim that she was sorry she could never be friends with me because all I wanted to do was waste my life as a mom. Tim was terribly upset and offended on my behalf even though I told him I didn’t care. I was wonderfully happy with my choice and I actually felt sorry for that woman who thought a working career was the only way to be happy. Needless to say, my husband and I haven’t seen them since. I’ll never forget that encounter. It makes me feel more encouraged to keep being the best mother I can be.
Later I asked Sue to explain why she loves being a stay-at-home mom. She gave me 12 reasons:
1. I love having the freedom to make my own schedule and plan things for when they work out best. The unpredictability in everyday life with kids makes for non-stop action and entertainment.
2. I love that I get to act like a kid again any time of the day, without worrying that I’m too old to be acting like a kid. I can sit beside them and let my creative juices flow while getting messy with play-doh. I have more fun now than I ever did!
3. I have the privilege of being able to homeschool my children. It is pure joy for me to see their faces light up in awe as they learn something, or accomplish a new task. As a bonus, I have learned more now than I ever did in school.
4. I love being there for their milestones and growth as each year passes by. I don’t want to miss a thing!
5. I love that my children run to me for help. I get to wipe away tears, give big bear hugs when they are sad, and yes, even wipe the runny noses. It all means I am there for them when they need me.
6. Children will keep you humble like nothing else. I know I need the daily reminders and what better way than your own dear children! There is nothing like coming home from half a day’s worth of errands to find out you had a clothespin in the back of your hair the whole time.
7. There is an exciting joy in experiencing the world for the first time again. To be reminded to see things from a different point of view–through the honest eyes of a child–is something I think we all need to have. What wonderful discoveries I have made!
8. I love that my children don’t care if I am in style or not. In fact, I love seeing their styles and personality grow and develop!
9. I am able to be a nurse, chauffeur, teacher, seamstress, chef, hair stylist, artist, lifeguard, negotiator, builder, activity director, librarian, and counselor all in one day.
10. There is no better mood lifter than hearing the bubbling giggles and laughter of your children!
11. There is nothing to compare to the spontaneous hugs, kisses and “I love you’s” from them when I am sick or feeling quiet. Oh, the unconditional love of my children! It is amazing how perceptive children can be to our adult emotions and moods.
12. I love being able to teach them diligently about the Bible and becoming soldiers for Jesus Christ. I enjoy making every moment a learning one and applying the Bible to those moments. I cannot imagine a higher calling for me!
Note: This post also appears on christianity21st.com.