Brittany Arnold

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February 27, 2013
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Brittany Arnold: Sometimes, God wants you to be a stay-at-home mom

Controller. Planner. Mover. Shaker.

A few years ago, I had plans.

Today, those plans linger in the worn heels that stomped around New York City, the Bay breeze left on my jackets and the stack of magazines on the bookshelf.

I’m continually asked what it is like to go from career-woman to stay-at-home wife and mom, what it is like to go from paychecks, constantly e-mailing on my phone, meeting celebrities and feeling like I was contributing to society, to cooking, cleaning, diaper-changing and feeding.

“Don’t you miss it? Don’t you feel like you’re giving something up? Aren’t you bored?” they ask.

Every mother who either works or stays home has their reasons, answers and hopefully, trusts they are where God wants them to be.

My particular answer is that I have never been more fulfilled in my life. Ironic, coming from someone who never wanted to stay-at-home, who can’t sit still and who struggles with routine.

However, when you take your obsessively written-in and highlighted agenda-for-life and hand it over to God, when you disengage your strong opinions about how it should be and what people will think and when you take your unhappiness and failed plans and say, “OK, you take this,” then He will show you your purpose for life.

It is like opening a present, but a tough one with lots of tight ribbon and tape. It's one of those gifts you delicately open because the wrapping is so pretty.

My gift was our daughter, and, yes, 24-7 mommyhood was tough to adjust to. But once I cut through and began slowly peeling back what it was like to be a stay-at-home mom, I felt what it was like to be living in God's design for me.

I didn’t feel like I was losing things but gaining everything. I now had the most important and influential position in society. I didn’t have to be a stay-at-home mom. I got to be.

No matter how many people sneered at me for “throwing away my career,” nothing could take away this feeling of complete fulfillment.

Not to say being a stay-at-home mom and wife is simple – it is the hardest job I’ve ever had. But even on the hardest day, I wouldn’t give it up.

Douglas County Moms blogger Hayley Ziebart said this last week: “God made us for one purpose, Him.” And once you are in the mold He made for you (which is most likely not the one you made for yourself), you will feel the splendor.

You will breathe comfort, peace and joy. You will be encouraged. In weariness and challenges, you will still cherish and love what you get to do every day.

Wherever you are, whatever you are doing, make sure you trust that you are where God wants you to be. Don’t listen to others, don’t listen to yourself or society – listen to God and you’ll feel it in your heart.

“There is no one perfect way to be a good mother. Each situation is unique. Each mother has different challenges, different skills and abilities, and certainly different children. The choice is different and unique for each mother and each family. Many are able to be 'full-time moms,' at least during the most formative years of their children’s lives, and many others would like to be. Some may have to work part-or full-time; some may work at home; some may divide their lives into periods of home and family and work. What matters is that a mother loves her children deeply and, in keeping with the devotion she has for God and her husband, prioritizes them above all else.” – Elder M. Russell Ballard

Brittany Arnold is married with one child and another on the way. Read her Wednesdays on Douglas County Moms. Also check out her personal blog here.

I now had the most important and influential position in society. I didn’t have to be a stay-at-home mom. I got to be.

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The News-Review Updated Mar 11, 2014 08:21AM Published Mar 8, 2013 09:14AM Copyright 2013 The News-Review. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.