It’s been nearly four and a half years since I hung up my hospital badge as a full-time child life specialist and changed my path to become a stay at home mom. It was one of the most difficult decisions I made because I have such a strong passion for the field and really just loved my job. The relationships I built with the patients, families and medical team members was amazing. I miss them so much. I felt like I made a difference in the kid’s lives and it was so rewarding.
I always knew I wanted to be a mom. I pictured myself raising kids and watching them reach all the different milestones. I knew that I didn’t want someone else to witness all the wonderful developments and then relate to me when I picked them up from daycare. Even though it was a tough decision to make it was the right one for our family. I have empathy for other parents who would love to be a stay at home but are forced to work for financial reasons. I hope that they are able to find an emotional balance between the two.
Here I am now with two young boys and wondering when I will return full-time. I know it won’t be anytime soon, as my youngest is only 13 months. I have however been able to find a better balance of staying connected and feeling like my purpose as both a child life specialist and a mom are being put to use.
Volunteering in a bereavement group to help support children and their families who have lost a loved one, is very fulfilling. I am also delighted to know that my blog/site is a great tool to stay connected and reach people who I never thought I could reach.
The field of child life will always be there. It will continue to grow and expand in hospitals and alternative settings. I know that I will be back one day, but until then, this mommy is loving all the good, bad and ugly sides of being a stay at home parent.