I never intended to be a stay at home parent. I knew I wanted to be a wife/partner and eventually have children, but the idea of staying at home always seems way too HARD and besides, I had much too much to accomplish on my own.
Well, life, as life does when you have any sort of plan said, “That’s what you want? Oh really? Universe, hold my beer…”
Fast forward some time and right when my culinary career was beginning and starting to take shape, BOOM, I get pregnant with Brayden.
Plans change, life happens, I was happily married, so I did what I usually do, rolled with it…
Fast forward some more time, just when I was figuring out how to be pregnant without killing someone, we move cross-country to NC for Brett’s work and the stay at home partner journey begins.
I was right.
It is way too hard most of the time, put a screeching halt to all those plans I had in my mind, and left me confused and unfulfilled in a way I wasn’t expecting. I was confused, because guess what again?! I am REALLY good at being a stay at home parent/wife. Let all your 1950’s images flood your brain, and that’s right, I am that good. Everyone is left cared for, their buckets are filled, they live their lives without a care in the world, in a cozy home managed by someone they love and trust. It’s good to be my family, let me tell ya.
Now I must say the same thing that all stay at home parents say, “I love my family, BUT…” Of course I love them, we all do, but I have never been truly self-fulfilled as solely a partner and mother. Some are, and I was even surrounding myself with those parents for a long time. Watching them happily go about their domestic lives with big smiles on their faces. Deep in their hobbies, joyous about their next work out, excited about the meals they were going to prep, looking forward to the monthly BUNCO games. I so wanted to be that and tried to fit my gorgeous square body into their small round hole, did my best to copy their every move, but was always left confused as to why this didn’t make me happy.
For many years, I internalized this unhappiness as something wrong with me. Little did I know I was just like everyone else, a human looking to find their purpose in this life.
I’ve been a stay at home parent now for…you know, I actually don’t know. I can’t remember when I left the bakery the second and final time. Lynn, if you are reading, chime it, you would know…anyway, I digress, I have been a stay at home parent for forever now and what that time has given me, when I was finally willing to face it, is the gift of time and the gift of figuring myself out.
This is such a gift and a HUGE privilege, that most may never have the opportunity to do; however, I’ve ignored this task for a long time and only recently in the last few years, began to dive head first into my psyche to figure out what I truly want to do once these kids are grown and gone, because it is coming fast. This gift of time has allowed me to explore different options for what my life would look like as Sue Robinson: self/woman/human. NOT, Sue Robinson: wife/partner/mother.
I’ve explored these options during my time at home through hobbies, reading, writing, travel, jobs at the kid’s schools, classes, and most importantly volunteering. That last one, volunteering, is the place I feel most at home.
I am an empath. An Enneagram 2, the helper. I have a keen skill in empathy, one that can be my ultimate demise at the same time as my biggest strength. I have a big heart, always feel drawn to the underdog and under the watchful eye of my children, in a world extremely divided, volunteering calmed my heart and mind.
SO…Why not use my gifts to seek out a purpose filled life?
The meaning of life is to find your gift. The purpose of life is to give it away. ~ Pablo Picasso
Enter my greatest transition yet, Graduate School Student; pursuing my Masters in Social Work. I am SO excited you guys. I haven’t felt this excited, nervous, hopeful and calm all at the same time about something since…well, I married Brett. That was a heart centered and calming decision too.
Why not use my time at home, because I still have quite a bit of it left, and my aptitudes, in my favor?
It won’t be easy, but I am definitely up for the challenge and the change that comes with it. The family and I have already had some growing pains that come along with a big change like this, but the end of this journey will give me opportunities to be a force for good, make positive change, advocate for the people who need a voice in ways that I haven’t be able to as a volunteer.
So cheers to transitions, being human, figuring life out, and lots of hard work.