To work or not to work?

What a LOADED question!

This post is not in anyway meant to offend anyone, especially those who are not given the opportunity to choose to work or not.

I get it, life is expensive.  Having kids is expensive.  Therefore having a steady income is a must!
As a stay at home Mom, I not only feel pressure to be a great  "perfect" mom, but I also feel so much pressure to contribute to society, work, and make money.   I also think part of it is because I have a bachelor's degree in psychology that I feel like I am wasting....sometimes.  I will use it day.   It is a constant battle that I struggle with on the reg.  I might even be hypersensitive to this subject because it is on my mind daily and I am so conflicted.   I want to be there for my children more than ANYTHING but I also want to be financially independent and contribute to our family monetarily!  I often find myself feeling worthless, or like a big mooch and it makes it even harder when you get comments about not working.

I am extremely fortunate to have a husband that provides a stable income for us to live off of through the military.  However, I don't like people insinuating that we live some LAVISH lifestyle.  Maybe we do live a lavish lifestyle but it is because we choose to live life to the fullest, take advantage of living in new places, and make the best of any situation.  Everyone can do that.  You determine your own happiness.
My precious boot nearly 10 years ago!

We are also very frugal people and try our hardest to live beneath our means.  One thing that I absolutely LOVE about Cliff is that he has never been one to want what other people have.  He doesn't try to be someone that he's not, doesn't care about what people think of him, and NEVER tries to impress people.

We seldom splurge on anything.  I coupon, cutting them out and I use tons of money saving apps, shop at consignment/thrift stores, buy tons of things secondhand, drive a 15 year old vehicle, usually only eat out (dinner) once a week (weekends), don't hardly ever buy Starbucks, I get my hair, nails, or toes done but once in a blue moon.  I sell my clothes and the kid's clothes/shoes online and sometimes redo furniture that I've purchased second hand for extra cash.  We do a ton of DIY projects and I am so thankful that Cliff is so handy and can fix nearly anything himself, including the fairly new dryer that broke last week. 😑  We try to save as much as we can and have read and listened to Dave Ramsey more than I cared to!

With this type of military job, he is also basically owned by them.  If they say you have duty this day, then you have 24 hour duty.  If they say you have to move across the country or even to another country, guess what?  You're outta here!   If they say you have to deploy for X amount of time then you have to deploy and it could possibly be XYZ amount of time.  You get my point.  There are pros and cons with every job.

Since Cliff is in the military, we live in Virginia.  We also live on base which people think is "free".  It is NOT free to live on base.  Part of my husband's salary is allotted for housing.  The allowance is based on your rank and the surrounding area where you are stationed.  We live on base so his housing allowance goes entirely to Lincoln military housing.....straight from his paycheck before it's ever put into our bank account.  This does cover water (however due to contaminants found in the water on base, we do not drink or cook with this water and pay for a water delivery service.  We've known a child that got cancer from drinking the water on base in SC so we are not taking any chances.) and an electricity allowance but for some odd reason we go over every month and owe more money.

I feel like a lot of my military spouse friends feel this way too.  We often lose our own identity to our husband's and become the "dependent".  A "dependent" is another word for military spouse and once you're married, this term will come to haunt you.  They hardly ever ask for your social or DOB.  It's always, "What's your SPONSOR'S social, SPONSOR'S DOB, SPONSOR'S pay grade?"  You're just a "dependent".....eyeroll! 😠

Military Spouses sacrifice A LOT!  And in all honesty, they don't get the recognition that they deserve.  Some of us have sacrificed careers,  professional growth,  restarting careers each move, school opportunities, career opportunities, having a home or dream home, seeing friends and family, the flexibility to travel or take time off....the list goes on. We move not because we want to, but because of our spouses.  We sacrifice time..... planning moves, finding new schools, churches, dentist, doctors, hairdressers, and FRIENDS!  Having a spouse that is gone so often will put strains on your relationship.  We're often forgotten about by family or friends because we live so far away. We sometimes go days, weeks, months without hearing from our spouses not necessarily because they're deployed but because they're in the field, in school, in bootcamp, on a mission, whatever it may be. We can't do a lot of things without getting our Sponsor to first fill out this form and this one and this one.

Both of our families currently reside in SC.  That means no family close by to help out with kids.  Childcare is also expensive and now that we have two,  I would have to find a job making pretty good money for it to even pay for childcare.  I'm not working just to work at this point and honestly NO amount of money could EVER be earned to replace what I've earned at home.  It is also extremely hard to find good and trustworthy help.  Fortunately, I have met some other military spouses that have stepped up and have become like family to me.  I've had many friends watch my kids when I've been in a crunch and am so incredibly grateful for them.  But what if one of my kids gets sick, or I'm stuck in this hellacious traffic up here and can't get to them because I'm at work?  Cliff can't get them either because he's training, in a meeting, deployed, on duty...then what?

Yes,  it is nice to physically not have to go into work, especially not in a dreaded no sign of sunlight in sight cubicle.  But guess what?  I used to, I've been there, I have done it too!  I'll be right back in the workforce as soon as we are settled and the girls are both in school.

Anyways, my point is, both SAHM and working mothers feel guilty for doing one or the other.  It's like there is no happy medium.  You can't please everyone and people are going to judge you no matter what, so it seems.  It's like "you're damned if ya do and damned if you don't"!  What I hope that you'll take from this post is to know that we as Moms are all doing the best that we can.    We're only one person!  Do whatever makes YOU happy and whatever works best for YOUR family.  No one knows what it is like to walk a mile in your shoes. 

Image result for everyone is fighting a battle you know nothing about quote
I wrote this post last week but for some reason couldn't bring myself to post it.  However, I randomly came across this article yesterday.  The author so eloquently wrote some of what I wanted to say too!  


  1. The mental struggle IS real! I appreciate you putting your feelings into words, the feelings most of us mil spouses and mother's share. I always tellyself and others, "it's all temporary". With the good and bad, it's all temporary. Bless you girl and keep on blogging, I truly enjoy reading!

    1. Awww thanks Abbey! I appreciate it and hope that you guys are well!


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