"Oh, I'm just a stay at home mom."
"I don't have time for a hobby. I'm just so consumed with family."
"Prior to having a baby, I loved....."
"I don't really have a hobby anymore."
"I too have done away with my hobbies since I became a mom. I used to do ....."
"I spend all my time taking the children to their activities."
I meet a lot of moms who have their whole identity wrapped up in being a mom. They have completely lost their identity as an individual, and that's sad. It is vitally important that we moms show our children that we are a complete person, that being a mom is only a part of who we are as an individual. And even more important, we need to do this for ourselves. We have to keep hold of our own interests otherwise, when those children are grown, what is left? Not only do you face an empty nest, but you face an empty person!
Being a SAHM isn't "just" anything. It's HUGE! You are your child's first and most important teacher. You are teaching your child how to interact with the world, what the world expects of him, and how she is expected to treat others. No one can ever take your place. You're not just a SAHM. You're THE stay-at-home mom for your children. You are making hundreds of decisions everyday about the care of your children, so don't underestimate yourself.
Being More than a Stay at Home Mom isn't about making a list of all the little things your do everyday (wash bottles, laundry, fold diapers, schedule doctor appointments) because working-outside-the-home moms do that too. But think about the big things you're teaching your children everyday. What is the culture of your home? What values are you teaching your children? What are you teaching her about the world? What are you teaching him about himself? There are much bigger things to teach our children than just diapers and dishes.
I believe the most important thing you can teach your children is that you're a whole person, with your own hobbies, interests, and activities. Yes, you'll be there for her band concerts and his choir concerts, but you'll also be attending your own club meetings, so they'll have to make their own supper, hopefully with Dad, on Thursdays. Be fair to yourself. Be a whole person and not "just a stay at home mom."