You’re more than “just a mom” + four ways to spark creativity

More than Just a Mom

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Written by Lydia @ Frugal Debt Free Life, Contributing Writer

I don’t think she meant anything by it. This woman standing in front of me at the preschool Halloween party.

“Do you work or are you just a mom?”

I know she didn’t mean anything by it. It was a more a reflection she saw of herself than of me. See, she had labeled herself as “just a mom.”

She told me she quit her job after her daughter was born.

“I don’t regret is for a minute, but I miss the creativity,” she said.

And I nodded along.

The whole drive home I thought about it. I thought how sad it was that she labeled herself “just a” anything.

But don’t we all do that? I’m just a mom. I’m just a teacher. I’m just a … fill in the blank.

But we are more than just one thing. Caretakers, cooks, teachers, people tasked with the nurturing of little people. And oh, what a wonderful, exhausting, beautiful and messy task it can be. It’s important work, ladies. Don’t label yourself as “just a” anything.

But I thought about the other half of her statement too, “I miss the creativity.”

I felt that very deeply.

I have always leaned toward the creative. Before I became a stay at home mom I was a news reporter. I loved writing. I loved meeting people and telling their stories. And to be totally honest when my oldest son was a baby, I missed it.

I craved for a creative outlet to express myself.

So what is a creative type to do when she feels like “just a mom?” How does a mother nurture her own creativity?

1. Carry a journal.

I like to carry a simple notebook with me. If you ever see me out in public, it’s in my purse. I carry it to church, to the supermarket, the park. Everywhere.

I jot down ideas, make to do lists, create goals and just dump out everything on to paper before it leaves my brain.

2. Connect with other creatives

One Sunday morning I had the privilege of working in our church nursery with a fellow stay at home mom who had been an art teacher.

We discussed messy houses, painting, writing, sewing and blogging. It was so nice to talk to someone who was just as scattered and messy as me.

3. Take the time to do what you love

If you love to write then write. If you’re a painter, pull out your brushes and paint. Don’t say you don’t have time. If you have time to cruise Facebook, then you have time to focus 15 minutes on something that speaks to your soul.

4. Find things that spark your creativity

Go for walks, take a drive down a back road, people watch in the pickup line at preschool. Whatever it is that gives you a germ of an idea and sparks inspiration, go to those places.

Make your creativity a priority in your own life.

How have you sparked creativity and became “more than just a Mom”??

About Lydia

Lydia is a writer, wife and mother. She loves Jesus, reading and coffee. She lives in rural South Alabama with her bearded husband and wild boys. She can be found daily shading under a pecan tree, feeding her 30 chickens and dreaming of the mountains. You can visit her at Frugal Debt Free Life where she blogs about saving money and living a slow life.


  1. I definitely agree about the importance of making time for creativity. Once my kids were old enough to sit with me at the table, art time became easier because we all did it together. Now we do watercolors, pastels, pen drawings, and even embroidery occasionally together. It is rewarding for me on a personal level, but also rewarding to watch my kids start their creative lives as well.

  2. I’ll pick up a book to enjoy or sew if I have a large block of time. Sometimes I’ll bake something special or clean my house.