Why am I being punished for staying home with my kids?

The picture on the left is my "teacher pic." The photo on the right is a what I refer to as a "mommy pic." Same woman in two different roles. Whenever I found out I was pregnant with my second child, it became very clear that it wouldn't make financial sense for me to work outside of the home due to the high costs of childcare, not to mention no one (besides my mom who lives hundreds of miles away) was running over here offering to care for two little ones who would be 21 months apart. So, I put my teaching career on hold and began a mompreneur venture of becoming a podcast host and mom blogger.

Now it's like I walk around with a Scarlet letter on my back. People are constantly asking me questions like, "What do you do all day?" and "When are you going to get back into teaching?" Gone are my fashionable "teacher" clothes unless I happen to be attending a networking or speaking event. It's even more rare that I get a date with my husband, and the few times I do, we are rushed because The Question of "When will you two be back?" gets asked before we even walk out the door, so basically the only "attention" I get is from the little munchkins who are in constant need of my help. 

Why am I being punished for staying at home with my precious little girls?! Why do some people look at me as though I "threw a great career away" to "do nothing all day." (Side Note: I give these same people less than an hour in my shoes, and we'll see how much of 'nothing' they do!) I get no attention because I'm not strutting around in stilettos and instead dress for comfort, spit-up attacks and Spaghetti-o spills. Shame on me! 

I hit rock bottom, or maybe I should say, I reached my limit and had an "A-ha" moment that I want to share with all of the stay-at-home and work-from-home moms....

When you feel all alone and like no one knows nor appreciates your value, take a deep breath, look to God and exhale. God knows your value, your children need you and you ARE amazing! You are so amazing that you don't need the approval or affirmation from others to know your worth. Instead, you can look at those beautiful little lives you brought into the world and nothing more needs to be thought or said. 

It's essential that we model self-love and confidence for our children. Teach them, through your actions and beliefs about yourself, that confidence and self-love come from within. It's not about what clothes you wear or what occupation you're in, it's about bringing value to those around you (like your children that you love and care for so well), which in turn brings you a joy and peace like nothing else!

I'm DONE with letting people, no matter who they are, have control over how I feel about myself and you should be too! Trust yourself! Trust your decision to be at home with your children because you know what's best for your family and what everyone else thinks about you is irrelevant! Surround yourself with positive people who see the best in you instead of tearing you to shreds. If you have people in your life (family or not) who are negative and constantly questioning or not valuing who you are, do yourself a favor and keep them at a distance! They need space to work on themselves and you don't need to be subject to their nonsense in the meantime. Pray for them, but don't let their issues become a part of you.

Hold your head up high and know for a fact that as the wonderful Rachel Martin of Finding Joy says...YOU ARE ENOUGH! 

Have you found yourself feeling like you're being "punished" for staying at home with your kids? What do you do to combat the negativity and judgement? I'd love to hear from you! <3