the last two to three weeks in the blair home have been NUTSO. mike and i have been insanely busy at work and well… that kind of means the rest of our lives take a back seat. sigh. i feel like when things are easing up for me, they are getting more stressful for mike and vice versa. which means that we’re always in survival mode~ where one person is “single” for the night/week and we’re doing the best we can to get through that moment. i feel like we’re always playing catch up and there is never a day or week where we feel “on top”. i have such strange and conflicting feelings about working mom life. it’s both amazing for our family and hard at the same time. if i stayed home then i could do all the home stuff AND support our mike/our family in the ways we are “behind” right?? sigh… i dunno… but then would i feel fulfilled?
here are some lessons/hardships that maybe you other mamas are going through too?
there is never enough time to do anything. we have no in-unit laundry or dishwasher. we have no paid help either. SOO trying to keep our place running in tip top shape is a losing battle. charlotte can make a mess faster than you c an even THINK about cleaning. sigh. this is probably a phase, but i think this is one of the hardest things about being a working mama. i wish i could have 2-4pm everyday to do one thing around the house or clean without any interruptions. sadly on the days that mike and i really need it~ we give c a phone and clean as fast as we can. in a perfect world we would have a full time nanny that does all the cooking and cleaning (and MAYBE do all the morning shifts before 8am. lol)
i feel like this is a double edge sword. my work is about 20-30 min away from our place, but b/c c is going to daycare VERY far out of the way, my commute is about 1.5 hours each way. as hard as it is, i would NEVER change daycares~ another hardship of of the commute is the wasted time. i listen to podcasts and really enjoy my alone time~ but i wish i weren’t driving. i could get so much more done if i were in the backseat with a driver!!
i’ve been working since i was 20 and have a pretty sweet pension. if i quit or go part-time~ i say buh-buh to the sweetest retirement i’ve set up. i mean OBVI i can go part-time but i won’t be accruing my pension as quickly (which means i ultimately have to work longer) and leaving now means i still have a nice chunk of retirement set up but not as much as when i’d be getting at 61. PLUS… you can never have enough money right? it’s nice to have the extra income each month.
Ohhh and one kinda random/weird thing…i feel like i’d be losing my power and a sense of myself if i quit. having a job is not only personally enriching (will talk about that later) but it gives me a secure backup in case something happens: mike loses his job, we are in a financial crisis, we need benefits, if mike (God forbid) passes away, or WHATEVER. having a job always gives me, as a woman, options. i feel like so many women are left with nothing if their breadwinning partner is no longer in the picture. OR there are so many women who don’t leave a bad marriage b/c they don’t have options. after being a women’s studies major, that is one story i heard ALL THE TIME. so sadly this is one small thing in the back of my mind i always think about.
the one super awesome thing about being a working mama is the socialization that it brings to our family. i am able to get out of the house, socialize with people, do work that directly affects students, and have a career. a career that i’m sure will one day bring me fulfillment (b/c right now i’m in coasting mode). i’ve also made wonderful friends at work that are from totally different backgrounds and experiences. being able to talk to them about family, parenting, etc is amazing and so enriching.
for c, being at the daycare has been HUGE. she is playing with kids all day, she’s learning from awesome teachers, she is learning KOREAN, and just overall she is advancing so quickly. after seeing the wonderful effects of daycare on c, i would totally send all of my kids~ even if i weren’t working. i searched SO HARD for a good daycare and i’m grateful everyday that c goes there. she is learning languages, songs, social & motor skills, and SO MUCH MORE. this is the one thing that i’m happy and confident about as a working mom.
this has been my experience and journey as a new mama. i feel like my world has been turned upside down. i SUCK at life and at work. i have no time to do more than the min at work. i never get to see my non-west LA friends. and so much more. BUT THAT IS OK. i’m accepting that this is a hard time in our journey as a family and that we will get through it. i also have no regrets. i love this perfect moment in our lives. after our last baby is born and s/he is 4 things will get better. but until that day comes…i’m going to look cray cray, have no long-term or short-term memory and be in survival mode. so to all of my friends~ i apologize for the past 3 years and the future 10. xoxo