Steve's Question

Steve asked this question during our daily email entitled "baby drop off successful" :

"You have now been at work for about 2 months. After spending her first 5 months with her 24/7, are you glad that you went back to work? Or do you wish that you had just become a full time mom?"

Instead of answering him I wrote back saying that this might be an interesting blog post. The statement you see above this was all that I have had since oh about 9AM and it is now after 3PM. I cannot say if I have been just that busy today or just ignoring this browser window sitting idle down there next to the Start button.

Am I glad that I went back to work? Or do I wish I had stayed a full-time mom? GAWD.

I truly am glad that I went back to work, but there are days that I miss her so intensely that I spend a great deal of my day flipping through the picasa links. There are days when I go to hand her off to Michelle or Sarah and inside my head there is a voice that says "Go, Run, NOW!," but there are other days that I drive to work so filled with purpose, that I cannot wait to get there to share my latest and greatest program idea.

I have a great gig going here and I know how incredibly lucky I am to have this flexible position. My boss understands that Caroline and Steve come first and that anything work related will be secondary at best. I like what I am doing, but it isn't the most challenging work I have ever done. I provide limited assistance to the people that I work with and spend some afternoons being constantly dragged onto the dance floor by older gents looking for a partner. I enjoy coming up with new program ideas, but most times feel that someone else is constantly pushing their agenda and thus my ideas to the side, but I suppose that isn't really anything new. This morning I wanted to talk about National Caregiver Month - November in case you wanted to mark your calendars - and the powers that be just went on and on about emergency preparedness, all the while reminding me that she was leaving in 20 minutes.

Let's not forget the dinero either. The money I am making here is not breaking the bank, but it is definitely helping and making a difference and for that I am very happy. It was incredibly stressful with the house closing, the Home Depot runs, etc and I am glad that the extreme penny pinching and how much was that coffee accusations are long behind us. That being said, we did learn to live entirely off of one income and thus my money has been mostly for the fun things just as we had intended, which makes me feel perty darn fancy.

I enjoy that I am able to come to a place that does not involve changing diapers, calming a gassy baby, or singing the Hokey Pokey. At the same exact moment though, I frown and pout at my desk when I look at the clock and realize it is naptime and someone else is patting her tush and getting her sleep and they definitely are not singing her those silly songs that I brazenly share here for what reason? I practically skip out of here when it is my turn to get her because I cannot wait to see her little face and eat her belly to hear that squeal giggle thing she does. When it comes time to take out that pump only to have phone ring or hear another client knocking on my door for a walk-in appointment, well those times are not pretty at all. I try to spend that awful pumping time catching up on the beanie board, reading sundry here, or here, and even lately here, and looking longingly at photos of the little Miss.

I get sad when I think that someone else might be seeing her firsts, that maybe those first steps won't really be her first steps afterall. I get to miss her though. I am in no way saying that stay at home moms don't appreciate the time that they have with their kids, of course they do. I am just saying that for me, I love missing her and knowing that I get to see her at the end of the day. Those first few minutes she is home and I cover her in kisses are the absolute best and my heart overflows and all is right in the world. Those days are like meeting her all over again.

So to answer your question Steve, yes, I am glad that I am a part-time working mom. I am both proud and elated that I was able to spend such wonderful quality time with Caroline before transitioning back into the working world and no, I do not regret my decision or question it. (OK, I do, but only when she is sick ONCE AGAIN and any parent would ok!?) It hasn't been easy, but what part of parenting is? If anything it has helped me to be a little more easy going, to let things slide a bit more because I have taken this big step in letting her go. I know that band-aid would have been much more painful to rip off if I had stayed at home and while I would NEVER question another mother's decision, this was the right thing for us, for now. I don't know how I would feel if there was another McBaby, but that is a question for us to answer down the road. For now, I have a nice balance and who doesn't like feeling all nice and balanced?


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