Working girl.

I have friends that are stay-at-home moms, friends that are part-time working moms, and friends that are full-time (or more) working moms.  I’ve always just thought we do what we need to do, for our mental health, finances, or to fulfill our passions.  Just a couple years after we got married, I kind of dreamily discussed being a stay-at-home mom with J.  It was more of a “if we win the lottery” discussion than any firm plan.  I wasn’t even ready for kids yet, and didn’t think about it very often after that.  Fast forward 8 or so years, and not only am I a SAHM, I’ve been one for over a year, I quit my job 3 months before my son was even due, and I bake our own hamburger rolls. Yes, you heard that right.  The Murphy’s Law part of the whole thing is that I had just found a job and an industry that I was actually passionate about. 

As much as I liked my job, it didn’t pay a lot.  I ran the beer department for a large grocery store.  I basically did the ordering and talked to customers all day about craft beer.  I was able to meet some industry people, go to beer events in the name of research, and even went on a work trip for a week long class and took a national beer related certification class.  So, you can imagine the benefits outweighed the low pay. That is, until Desmond appeared as some cells in my tummy.  

J and I immediately knew, without even discussing it, that I would be a stay-at-home-mom.  Those lottery dream thoughts came back, only we realized it was really going to happen. And for logical reasons, too.  Day care is expensive, kids.

….

Last night I had my first paying beer gig in around 15 months.  It was just 2 hours of talking to customers about beer, something I used to do daily.  It was fun.  And I had all the feelings that I expected to.  Am I losing a piece of myself by not doing this more often? Money is good. I miss D. I wonder if dad can get him to bed ok.. I know he’s fine, I’m being ridiculous.  But I miss him.  I’m too shy to do this beer stuff.  But I’m having fun and dude, money.  This feels weird, like an old version of me.  D needs me close. And on and on, the whole night. 

Then something happened that I did not expect.  I picked up a pizza and drove home. Dad had been able to get D to bed, with ease. They had a great night and played cars.  We ate our pizza and watched tv and I had an Oberon.  Dad was tired, had to work early, and went to bed. I went to the kitchen and surveyed the damage.  As I was washing the dishes I had this huge flash of gratitude and appreciation.  I found myself happy to be in the home that I created doing this menial duty.  A quiet house, besides the running water, where I was able to almost secretly help them out, washing their bottles and plates.  

Maybe that’s what working moms get every day.  I mean, I know they also get stress and headaches. And much less sleep than I get.  But that little glance made me look forward to my next gig.  I’m not going back full time, or even part time any time soon, but a couple hours a week to make grocery money, and remember why I’m here would be welcomed and absolutely worth it.

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Working girl.

One thought on “Working girl.

  1. The first few times I left Anna at home and went to do food testing, I felt incredible guilt. Like I was letting her down and that she would be miserable without me. Scarred even! The reality is, it was the exact opposite. She and her dad had a blast.

    I realized an important thing along the way: she needs time with her daddy *without* me and I need a break to focus on myself and do things that light me up. We are all happier for it.

    Kudos to you for staying present to the feelings that came up. You’ll find the right balance for you and family. xo

    Like

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