It didn’t really hit me last year when my youngest started university because he was attending school while living at home. It was still a normal day, he would leave in the morning but be home for dinner. If he was going to be late, he would send me a text message, but most days he was home for supper. This year is different though, last weekend we drove middle child and the teenage boy to another province for their return to university. There are no lunches to be made, no parent-teacher conferences, no afterschool sports, there is nothing. The eldest is home, but at twenty-four, a college graduate and working, I can’t really say I am a stay-at-home-mom (see Note) for her, so I am retired.
On the weekend, I met another mom, who also went from SAHM to retired. Now there are women out there who would argue that she should go out to work, the identity argument. How can you have an identity if you have no career and why would anyone want to go from SAHM to retired? Well, they do fine living on her husband’s income, so moneywise, there is no need for her to work. (Which brings another argument, why wouldn’t you want your own money? For some, like myself, my husband’s paycheque is the family’s paycheque). What does she do with her time then? Once or twice a week, she volunteers at a seniors home and you know what, it’s enough. She is happy with her life, no longer a stay-at-home-mom but retired.
Note: I haven’t been able to work for quite a few years now, but it has always been easier to say I am a stay-at-home-mom.