Leaving My Career and Becoming a Stay At Home Mom

by Courtney El-Ghoul

A topic that has been weighing on my mind, particularly now that the girls are going into their first year staying full days at school, is my past career. Not that I want to go back, frankly I don’t even know how I could manage it with their current schedule, but I have been just reflecting on how much my life has changed in the past 4 years. In some ways, I feel like a completely different person. I just wanted to share my experience in case some of you are thinking of going this route, or are maybe in the same position as me.

My old office

Making the Decision To Leave My Career

I have mentioned to you guys before that I was in new home sales for a decade before my stay-at-home-mom days. What I didn’t mention is that I went back to work when my maternity leave was finished. I only lasted five months before resigning indefinitely. This decision was not made lightly, I really struggled to come to this conclusion. I have worked my whole life. I had a job when I was 15, always worked throughout college, and immediately got into the workforce when I graduated. Point being, I was always super independent. I have always been incredibly invested in whatever job I had. My mom wasn’t able to stay home with us, so I also didn’t experience a parent being home when I was growing up. My parents instilled in me the importance of working hard, saving money, and not depending on anyone else to make that happen.

I dabbled in Real Estate a bit right after college, and eventually got my Real Estate License. I even worked for Khalil for a short time (haha, that’s another story all its own) also was bartending some in the evenings, as I still wasn’t sure what I wanted to do. I was always into home design, and a total people person at heart – so I thought ding-ding new home sales is PERFECT! I landed a job with a Fortune 500 home builder, and never looked back. Seriously, I loved my job. I started as a sales associate and worked my way to managing my own sales office selling million dollar estate homes in a beautiful community.

Let’s fast forward to when I finally (if you haven’t read the post on that journey – check it out) got pregnant with the twins. It was never a given that I would be staying home with them. Khalil and I had had a few discussions about it as an option, but ultimately I was like “no way”, I couldn’t imagine leaving my job. How can I walk away from everything I worked so hard for…? We agreed I would go back and see how things went. We never had a nanny/help on a daily basis. My mom helped when she could and my mother-in-law agreed to watch the girls when I went back to work. We thought we had it all figured out! It wouldn’t be that bad, I would still have all day with them on my days off, and we are so lucky to have their grandmother watch them! I was beyond appreciative we had this option, and I was all for it, I loved the idea that the girls with get some quality time with their grandmother. But, honestly, after I went back it was so hard to be away from them. Looking back, I think I was having a bit of post-partum. But, it was happening later so I wasn’t sure what it was? I didn’t know what I wanted. I didn’t want to give up my career, but I also felt like I was missing out on so much with the twins. After many tears were shed and long hard conversations were had, I decided to resign.

My Experience at a SAHM

Okay, so you would think I should be so happy now!? Right?! Well, it didn’t start that way at all. Staying home with two babies all day when you are used to selling houses and talking with mature adults is a total game-changer. The postpartum hit times two! Did I make the wrong decision? Am I a bad mom that I miss work? Is this what’s best for them? You name it, I was thinking about it. It took a long time for me to embrace my new life and be okay with it.

It’s not just getting adjusted to being with kids all day, but it’s also relying on someone else financially. You guys might have guessed by now that I am a beauty and fashion obsessed chick! I have never thought twice about a purchase in the past. I knew I was bringing in money and I could afford what I wanted. It’s an interesting feeling when that is no longer the case. Khalil was and still is super supportive, but it’s hard for me personally to not have that idea of financial independence that I’ve had since I was 15. As time passed, things got better, and now I look back and I am like … I can’t believe I beat myself up about this for so long. Raising these girls is HARD! It is an actual job, probably the hardest job I have ever had.

It may not be for everyone, but ultimately I don’t regret for one second leaving my career behind. And hey, this path led me to start this blog which was also a passion I always had. Who knows where I would be in my personal growth or just in general if I had stayed. Anyway, I don’t want to drag it out forever so I will leave it at that.

I guess what I am saying is… Go with your gut, and don’t look back:)

What about you guys? Do you have similar stories to share? 

XO

Courtney

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