The curse of the stay at home, work at home, loves her home mom


In recent months work has taken off for me quite a bit.  I’m at the tail end of editing a third book this year with a fourth lined up to start next week.  All four of these books fell in my lap and I have had more fun than I’d like to publicly admit fixing them up.  In addition to the books, I’ve started writing for a couple of other websites, am speaking next week at a social media event and am ramping up plans to send STL Family Life to the next level.

So many blessings.  I can’t tell you how much it thrills me to have these opportunities, but…

I’ve struggled lately.  Am I doing the right thing?  Is this what I should be doing?  Am I being all that I need to be for my kids, my husband and my community?  What if this path is the wrong path?  Am I being selfish?

I’ve been wading through some insecurity lately.  When I began this blog almost three years ago I had no clue what blogging was all about.  I wanted to keep a record of life with three kids amidst the insanity of a new baby.  And now, while I still want to keep a record for my kids, I must admit I’m also doing this for me.  I’m doing it because I love to create.  I love that this blogging/social media business has helped me burst out of my bubble a bit and meet people I never would have met before.

Some of you may have a hard time believeing this, but by nature I’m a bit of an introvert.  Meeting new people scares the crap out of me.  Meeting people who are successful and funny and accomplished makes me feel like curling up in bed with a copy of Jane Eyre, a bottle of wine and a year’s supply of PEOPLE magazine.

Sad, I know.

But in the last year I’ve found a new sense of confidence bubble beneathe the interior of my insecurity.  Part of it stems from my husband who never ceases to make me feel like I can conquer the world…and who tells me I’m hot on a daily basis.  Seriously can’t get enough of that…

Some comes from the fact that my family all support my online writing with a great deal of glee.  I can always count on my parents to make me feel like I hung the moon.

But a large part of this confidence has come from dear friends and absolute strangers.  People here in town who have embraced me and encouraged me, taught me and challenged me.  People who are beautiful and successful and…nice.  Women who are great moms and great writers.  Women who stay at home, women who work at home, women who work outsdie the home, women of all stages of life…Women who tell me it’s okay to pursue my dreams. 

So a new confidence is brewing inside.  But there is still guilt and insecurity.  You see, while I now feel confident in my ability to accomplish my goals and dreams, I question my motivation to do so.  I like that I can earn a little income and help support our family to a degree (or at least help take my husband on a rockin’ European vaction, anyway), and I like the creative outlet writing and editing give me which make me a better mom altogether. 

But is it right? 

I read this post today by Megan at Velveteen Mind and it struck a chord in my soul.  My career is filled with lofty ideals and noble goals.  My family is my mission.  I can fail in my freelance career – I cannot fail as a mother.

The thing that’s most frustrating about my current insecurities is that most of them have no base.  I’m not being unwise in my career.  I’m not sacrificing my family.  I’m not taking on more than I can handle (not now anyway) but I am struggling against this feeling of uncontentment.  I’m not content with my career because I want to take it to the next level, but I don’t want to take it to the next level because I fear I’ll sacrifice my family.  I’ve had enough work lately that I’ve tossed around the idea of hiring a babysitter for a couple of hours a week so I can get things done.  Oh the guilt I’ve felt for even thinking that!  Insane amounts…And here’s why – I love what I do!  Writing and editing are not work for me.  So hiring a sitter once a week so I can hole up in Starbucks and have fun feels like an indulgence.  I’m still not sure if I’ll do it or not…

And so I flounder a bit.

I don’t share this to have the problem solved.  I think all moms deal with this to a degree.  We all have to balance who we are inside the home with who we are outside the home.  We all have passions and goals outside of motherhood and yet we all long to do nothing more than be great moms.  I share this just to share.  To get it out of my head and off my chest.  To verbally confess – I’m struggling with life balance.  No one in my family is suffering, everyone’s healthy (emotionally that is – Tia has a nasty cold) and we are enjoying one another daily.  But I still battle within.

I don’t think I’m alone in this…


  1. As much as I miss my lil’ Mia on a daily basis while I am at work, I am thankful that I am able to balance working full time and being a good mom (most days anyway). Do not for ONE MOMENT feel any guilt for wanting to follow through with your dreams, goals and passions. You are who you are and you are an excellent writer!!! Embrace your talent and run with it. It’s ok if you want to hire a sitter for a few hours a week to help you focus solely on these dreams and goals.
    Life is full of balance struggles and it will continue to be that way for the rest of our lives. Go with what you feel is right in your heart and no one will (should) judge you because of it. You have every right to focus on yourself for a little bit, you’ve earned the right.

    So you go Girl!! (picturing you doing your best Wanda impression – oh how I wish I had an actual picture of you doing that – those were the days…Wanda and posing with appliances – LOL :))

  2. Thanks Mel. The funny thing is that I know deep down that all of my insecurities are unjustified but they still like to sneak up on me from time to time.

    Perhps someday an entire blog post should be dedicated to Wanda and her influence in my life. 🙂

  3. I want to thank you for your honesty. To younger (but not much younger!) women like me who don’t have kids yet, it is encouraging to know the feelings I have are normal–and that waiting to find out where God is leading me personally and in the context of my marriage is something that will always be there–but that I can trust Him to always be in control.


    I love reading your blogs…you are a wonderful writer.

  4. I think you have battle within when you have deadlines and you are afraid you won’t be able to meet them, when you are frustrated and not so confident. That’s OK. You can’t feel the same every day. But you are an amazing mom, a loving wife and daughter, a true friend and a incouraging writer. These are all your life statuses that make YOU!

  5. You are not alone. You mentioned something really important. You sent your husband on a rocking vacation. How important is that for your family and husband. Imagine how much stress you took off him from you doing that.

    Maybe instead of hiring a babysitter, you can hire someone to do some of the parts of your business you don’t need to be doing like bookkeeping. I hate bookkeeping. That way you aren’t spending an additional 3 hours away from your family.

    You’re a great writer. Very real. My husband always threatens me that he’s going to buy me a minivan. Maybe it isn’t such a bad thing. 😉

    Amy Pryor

  6. Nope – not a bad thing at all Amy. Just don’t look under the seats and avoid the way back at all costs. Things get dropped and left to rot back there. It’s a very scary place… 🙂

  7. ok, here it is. You do need to get a babysitter, or find a Mom’s Morning Out, 1 maybe 2 mornings a week. We’re just talking Landon here right. 2 mornings or even just 1 will be great for them and even greater for you. You will be a better mom, not as many 5 am wake up calls, no guilt and deadlines stressing you out, no cheating the gym out of their free childcare while you work 🙂 And this is coming from someone who is a diehard stay at home mom, I need my MMO!

  8. I’m TOTALLY having similar struggles! The difference is that I stayed home with my kids, then three years ago I went back to school and finished bachelor’s and master’s degrees back-to-back while working. It was both invigorating and completely exhausting. Love/hate. Now, because of a recent move, I’m at home full-time again and trying to decide what to do. I miss the “thrill” of working and accomplishing something other than dusting (oh wait…I don’t get that accomplished, either), but I also think about the implications of getting back in the game. My kids are older now (8 & 11) and I always thought that once they all became school-aged, I’d get started on my career. Now, I’m starting to wonder about that idea. It’s quite possible that my kids will need me more during their adolescent years than they did when they were wearing diapers and toting sippee cups! Should I “abandon” (lack of a better word)them during these really crucial years of their lives just to chase my own ambitions? Is it worth the sacrifice? Can’t it wait? On the other hand…I’ve already waited until my thirties to get started on a career and I just invested a huge amount of time into preparing for it. I kind of feel obligated to do that as well.


    BTW, I’m totally jealous of your editing gigs. I’m a “word nerd” like you. There’s something really satisfying about marking up a paper and making it better. Oh, to feel a red pen in my hand again…LOL! 🙂

  9. Hi there, just found you via Shaun Groves. I totally agree that BALANCE is a goal that’s ever-moving. It’s hard to juggle work, ministry, family, kids, marriage. And it’s so easy to let one of them become too big or too much, to the neglect of the more important.

    I love what you said, “I cannot fail as a mom.”

    A good reminder for me, today.

    As a side note, my husband is gone for the next 2 weeks, and I am solo-parenting my 3 kids, for the first time in a foreign country, and I am working my way through Jane Eyre at night!! Funny.

    Love from Thailand,

  10. Thanks for sharing that Kelli. Even though I only have one baby to care for I think the balance of mommy, wife and woman is ever-present. I’m dedicated to my family but I also have a desire to excel in the gifts God’s given me and explore all of who I am. I just appreciate you sharing. It doesn’t keep us from moving forward but those insecurities do creep in there.

  11. I would be more worried about you if you NEVER worried/wondered/pondered/stressed about any of this. We are all just struggling to find that correct balance for our individual families – how divine to have a husband who is so supportive (and who tells you that you are hot? nice work, Lee!) Keep doing JUST what you are doing – you are enjoying yourself and THAT matters! xoxo

  12. I just started this year working about 30 hours a week. I have felt some guilt but I really enjoy working and I think it makes me value my time with the children more. I am even paying someone to clean a little. I hate to clean and when I get home I want to spend my time hanging with the kids instead of cleaning and since I am working a little more I can afford it. I think it might have made me a better mom and the extra money is nice also. I know that my first committment is to my family but I am glad God is allowing me to have both a family and a job.


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