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Making choices

I am a lucky woman. I live in a time and a place where I was encouraged to attend high school, college, and graduate school. I chose the career I wanted, just because I wanted it. I'm allowed to vote and drive. I was able to buy a house and live in it by myself. I'm fully aware that some women in the world today do not have these options, and hoards more have been denied these options in the past.

I am proud of my achievements, and I have always been thankful that others (including my parents and grandparents) paved the way for me to have choices and make the decisions that I wanted to make.

And now, I want to change my mind. I want to spend my time and energy raising a curious, smart, energetic toddler. I want to show her the world and inspire her the way my mother inspired me, and I don't just want to do it for an hour or two in the evenings. I want to quit my full time teaching job and be a full-time, stay-at-home mom.

But now, I'm torn between the expectations of my friends and family, my own ambitions, and my heart. My father said, “You'd be a fool to give up that job.” and maybe that is true. Maybe we will struggle financially, and maybe I'll regret my decision. Maybe staying at home with Grace will be boring, and I will hate it. But these will be the consequences of a decision that I made.

My own ambition and sense of pragmatism also dislike my resigning to stay at home. I have student loans to pay and a Ph.D. to earn, and staying home a few years will make both harder. Plus, as a teacher, I have a terrific benefits and a retirement plan that I could tap into around age 55 – if I work straight through until then. Unfortunately, my heart says, “Stay home! Be with this child!” and I think it knows what it's talking about.

I'm proud of myself for doing so much in such a short time, and I'm grateful to all of the people who worked hard to ensure I'd be able to. Thanks to them, I have ability to decide for myself.

Now we all have to live with the choice I've made.

© 2008 – 2017, Tara Ziegmont. All rights reserved.

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14 thoughts on “Making choices”

  1. Tara, you ought to be proud of yourself. You are a fabulous teacher, and already an incredible mother. I have a feeling those around you will support you on whatever path you choose. You are very blessed to have the option to stay home with Squirt. If you can do it and it’s your passion, DO IT! You can always come back and teach if being at home is not your cup of tea. We need more excellent teachers like you in our schools anyway!

  2. Tara, you ought to be proud of yourself. You are a fabulous teacher, and already an incredible mother. I have a feeling those around you will support you on whatever path you choose. You are very blessed to have the option to stay home with Squirt. If you can do it and it’s your passion, DO IT! You can always come back and teach if being at home is not your cup of tea. We need more excellent teachers like you in our schools anyway!

  3. Staying home with a little one is NEVER boring! There is always plenty to do, trust me.

    Making memories is the most important. Maybe she won’t remember all that you do for her now, but you will, and your bond will be closer.

  4. Staying home with a little one is NEVER boring! There is always plenty to do, trust me. Making memories is the most important. Maybe she won’t remember all that you do for her now, but you will, and your bond will be closer.

  5. There will always be another school year starting, another classroom to lead.
    There will not always be another childhood of Grace’s for you to be so intimately involved in.

    Follow your heart. You won’t regret it.

  6. There will always be another school year starting, another classroom to lead. There will not always be another childhood of Grace’s for you to be so intimately involved in.Follow your heart. You won’t regret it.

  7. I agree that you will never have a dull moment if you stay home with your little one. It’s the best job a mother could ask for!

  8. I agree that you will never have a dull moment if you stay home with your little one. It’s the best job a mother could ask for!

  9. i don’t know any mom that has regretted staying home with their baby, but many that regretted not staying home. you will never get this time back.

    i often wish i had dropped out of PT school to start a family since the main reason i have to work now is to pay back student loans. when like you, my heart is telling me to stay home and be with antonio.

    good luck with your decision. i will keep you in my prayers. keep letting in God and He will help you make your choice. while “grillo” was certainly a bit of surprise, i think God was giving me an extra shove to help us realize that i should stay home and not work.

  10. i don’t know any mom that has regretted staying home with their baby, but many that regretted not staying home. you will never get this time back.i often wish i had dropped out of PT school to start a family since the main reason i have to work now is to pay back student loans. when like you, my heart is telling me to stay home and be with antonio. good luck with your decision. i will keep you in my prayers. keep letting in God and He will help you make your choice. while “grillo” was certainly a bit of surprise, i think God was giving me an extra shove to help us realize that i should stay home and not work.

  11. I could write this EXACT SAME POST. If only my coworkers didn’t read my blog. I know what you’re going through!!!

  12. I could write this EXACT SAME POST. If only my coworkers didn’t read my blog. I know what you’re going through!!!

  13. Aww, I feel for you going through this right now. It is the toughest and easiest decision you will ever make. By that I mean, the decision is really easy… your heart knows exactly what to do. However, that head of ours makes it the hardest thing. We as women work so hard to be everything… and then those darn maternal instincts come out and it is telling us the exact opposite of what we have been telling ourself all these years (during schooling, and the start of our career).

    I will say that being home with Maddie has been amazing, and I am so thankful to have been able to do it this far, and hopefully for a few more years. As for the finances… we haven’t really felt it yet, and I was sure we would by now. I think things kinda even out, less gas $, less lunch $, less eating out cause I have the energy to cook, etc. You will be amazed how it works out.

    A friend of mine said to me, you are not giving up your career- or in your case, your PH.D.- you are just putting it on hold for a while.

    Good luck!

  14. Aww, I feel for you going through this right now. It is the toughest and easiest decision you will ever make. By that I mean, the decision is really easy… your heart knows exactly what to do. However, that head of ours makes it the hardest thing. We as women work so hard to be everything… and then those darn maternal instincts come out and it is telling us the exact opposite of what we have been telling ourself all these years (during schooling, and the start of our career).I will say that being home with Maddie has been amazing, and I am so thankful to have been able to do it this far, and hopefully for a few more years. As for the finances… we haven’t really felt it yet, and I was sure we would by now. I think things kinda even out, less gas $, less lunch $, less eating out cause I have the energy to cook, etc. You will be amazed how it works out. A friend of mine said to me, you are not giving up your career- or in your case, your PH.D.- you are just putting it on hold for a while. Good luck!

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