Weekend Clarity.

June 8, 2010 at 10:07 am | Posted in motherhood, My life | 11 Comments

J and I went away this weekend. We left O home with J’s cousin S, and we went into Boston and stayed there for the weekend.

I ran in a 5 mile race on Saturday morning. Not one of my better runs for sure – it was hot and humid and I started out WAY too fast so I spent the next four miles trying to recover. Which completely sucked. But I did it, and I finished in 47:57, which isn’t a bad time at all given the conditions.

And there was free beer at the end, which was pretty awesome.

And then?

We did whatever we wanted, whenever we wanted it. We had lunch at a local seafood place right on the water. We saw a movie in the afternoon. I got to take a brief nap before we went out to dinner. We were in bed by 10pm.

And we went to breakfast on Sunday morning.

Since finding out that O was allergic to eggs, our weekend morning meals have changed dramatically. Gone are the days where we make pancakes or waffles or omelets for breakfast; mostly because O likes to have what’s off our plate. And we really want to incent him to try new foods, too.

So if I’m being honest – when I made the plans for the weekend two months ago, I made them as an excuse to have a really good breakfast.

Where I could have eggs (scrambled with bacon, goat cheese, asparagus, and scallions – YUM!) and toast and homefries. And more than one cup of coffee. And we could LINGER, instead of having to go, go, go.

It was absolutely FANTASTIC.

I can’t remember the last time we didn’t have an AGENDA. Or a list of the things we wanted to get done before we had to go home. But this time, we didn’t PLAN anything ahead of time. We just did things as we thought of them.

And J and I got a chance to really TALK. About jobs, and careers, and hopes for the future. And I was able to share with him the sense of pressure I feel to keep making more and more money, when really at the end of the day all I want is flexibility.

Truthfully, it surprised me when I realized I felt as strongly as I did that I wanted to be there when O gets off the bus from school each day. I just never really THOUGHT about it before now.

Daycare is fantastic for him right now; when he’s little enough that they can provide him with a good amount of stimulation, exposure to learning… and kids and sharing and taking his turn and all the things that they’re teaching him.

But I find myself thinking, increasingly, that when he gets older it isn’t going to be enough. *I* want to be the one who’s involved in his learning. I want to help with homework, and have family dinners every night.

I’ve worked so hard to even BE a mom that it’s really important that I’m not absent.

Yet, that very thought almost directly conflicts with everything I’ve thought and worked for – for almost my entire life. I grew up wanting a career.

I mean, hell, 10 years ago I wanted to be a defy gender roles and be a CEO.

So to find that no, actually, I DON’T want all of that, thankyouverymuch, is sort of unsettling.

The good news is that I don’t have to make any sort of decisions right now. Because as many of you pointed out in your comments, my function is applicable to many different industries. And during my auditing years, I saw a LOT of part time Controllers.

So it’s possible that I might be able to compromise here.

Maybe it means that I’ll never have a job that I LOVE, day in and day out.

But maybe that’s not such a bad thing, either.

Because if I take a long term view of things?

I very much doubt that in 50 years I’ll look back on this time and think “wow, I really wish I worked more than I did.”

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11 Comments »

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  1. Clarity indeed. And, YUM, breakfast! One of the things we love doing when we are on Cape is having wonderful, decandent breakfasts! I cannot imagine having to be careful — although my parents could relate I am sure–I was allergic to milk until I was 6 years old.

    I am so glad you and J had some alone time.

  2. SO glad you got the chance to go away. That breakfast sounds amazing! And well done you for finishing the race after starting too hard- sometimes I think that is harder than running a longer race. The feeling of wanting to die/stop/vomit for the rest of the race is awful, so congrats for pushing through!

    I hear you with the job thing. Q. is so insanely busy right now I wonder to myself why I am trying to get into the same profession. And if I succeed, why bother even having kids if we’re both going to work constantly?

    I am positive you have lots of options. You don’t need to make a final decision on anything now.

    I do understand the desire to have something that you really love to do- I am like that as well. But I’m not sure what that would be, and so I think sometimes we just have to do the best we can with what we have. Going part-time in the same career, if that is an option, sounds like a good possibility.

  3. your whole post made me smile 🙂 mostly because you were able to take that step back that you needed to and focus on what you really WANT/NEED out of parenthood.

    I know that whenever I have some time to just “be” and know that the boys are ok but I am not in charge of them at this moment, the I get clear. I’m so glad you got that too.

    no matter what your decisions are, made from this Point of view, with this open heart they will be the RIGHT ones for your family and for you.

    This post made me happy..for you…hugs

  4. Holy dude, you are so where I am. I have a post brewing on something very similar. And I’m surprised by it all, that I feel this way.

  5. Sometimes you need to pause and step back in order to look at everything properly and realise what your priorities are. And it’s good to do it from time to time, because priorities do change! A great weekend, for more reasons than one.

    Bea

  6. Eating breakfast out has ended for us, too. My son has a milk and egg allergy. Just so you know, we use the Aunt Jemima Original pancake mix (you add your own egg and milk)(it does say on the box that it could contain traces…but we’ve never had a problem) and I substitute a mixture of 1 1/2 T. oil + 1 1/2 T.water and 1 t. baking powder for each egg and they come out great.

  7. I’ve been a stay at home mom for over 8 years. Longer really, if you count the fact that we took several months off pre trying to conceive to make sure we could survive without my income as well. The difference here being I had a job, not a career so it wasn’t as hard a decision. Although I still had student loans.

    I look forward to the day when I do go back to work after all the kids are in school full days(2 years) but I am still discussing that I will want to find something that is after they leave and done by the time they get home so I can be here. Its easier in the non-career job market to find those jobs. But I know they can be done in your field as well. So I think its a worthy goal to strive towards. I don’t think kids can only be better off when they are raised with stay at home parents by any means. But I do think than many parents are better off if they can be home more with their kids. Kids are hard work and intense…but they are also really soothing and healing. And you’re right, you’ll never wish you worked more, but you will likely wish you’d had more time with O and his siblings.

  8. Ah, how I love those moments of clarity. It kind of sucks that (for me anyway) it usually means going through some crap feelings first before coming to that clarity.

    How lovely you and J had time away this weekend including a luxurious breakfast!

  9. Sounds like a great weekend! I very much miss leisurely breakfasts.

    Glad you had some moments of clarity, too. : )

  10. We love our weekends away! It is so true what Alex said above–you will never regret being there for your kids but could regret not being there. And it doesn’t really matter what you’re doing with most of your time–being a SAHM or an accountant or a teacher, etc.–the grass is always greener. There are days when I am so jealous of my husband’s life at work. I think it’s a funny comment above about discovering what you “want” or “need” from parenthood–like it’s a pilates class or something.

  11. So glad you guys were able to get away together! We find that to be SO important for our relationship (even if it’s only an evening out.)

    Good luck figuring things out about work. Luckily, you don’t have to decide immediately. But I think it’s important to be aware of what you want in terms of a work/life balance and to strive to achieve that. Of course, what you want will probably be different at every stage of O’s life, and there’s absolutely nothing wrong with that 🙂


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