Friday, March 11, 2016

My Third Life Crisis

I have some news. A lot of news, actually. I turned 30, quit my job, and went to Mexico.

It can't be called a midlife crisis. I hope I live past 60. In fact, it's not really a crisis at all. Allow me to explain. The turning 30 part was inevitable, and it wasn't so bad. I have a baby. It's about time I became an adult. Besides, 30 is the new 20 right? I had a really great birthday, which deserves its own post. And the trip to Mexico was just a vacation - not a defection - which also deserves its own post full of cute beach baby photos.

For now, let's focus on the middle statement: I quit my job.

Before Charlie was born, I had every intention of going back to work. I loved my job. I loved the people I worked with. I loved working from home.

Charlie's birthday card for me perfectly sums up our new working relationship.
I know it seems like it would be totally possible to have my cake and eat it too. I worked from home for goodness sake. How hard could it be to work around baby's needs? Really hard actually. Here is something a lot of people don't understand about working from home - it's still working! In fact, I'm quite sure I worked more in the last year+ than I ever have before. Also, the nature of my job was not flexible in that I had to be completely available during business hours. Placing clients or candidates on hold while I changed my baby's diaper was just not an option.

Yes, I could have hired someone to watch Charlie while I worked, and I considered that very seriously. I was absolutely torn about the whole thing. But, alas, childcare in the DC metro ain't cheap. When all was said and done, we would have been breaking even at best. I liked my job, but I didn't like it enough to do it for free.

It's certainly bittersweet. I know I will miss my work, but I'm also confident I made the right decision. You see, this tiny human has completely stolen my heart. So for this season of life, I'm just going to be mom. Just. Such a tiny word, but so full of connotation because who are we kidding, you can't be "just" mom. Mom is a full time job, and moms who work have two full time jobs. I don't envy them. There will be long days. There will be hard days. There will be days I count down the minutes until Dad comes home to relieve me.

But at the same time, I'll only get to do this once. I love the saying "The days are long, but the years are short." Someday - probably much sooner than I would like - Charlie will be all grown up and I'll desperately miss his tiny hands grabbing my necklace or hair as I rock him to sleep. It's a joy to be his mom, and I'm so glad I get to do it full time now.


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