Being a woman in the workforce is tough. I feel fortunate that I am a part of a generation where it was never a question – I could freely go to college and allow my qualifications to help get me a great job. As much as that was a given, I try my best to not take that granted. I appreciate that I can go to work and be valued for my thoughts and ideas, be asked my opinion, be given responsibility, and feel fulfilled. I realize that as recently as my mom’s generation that wasn’t necessarily the case.
But then you start thinking about having a family. That’s the tough part. Bigger brains than mine have discussed this topic at length. It’s a super emotional topic, and something that didn’t hit home until, of course, I was in the midst of starting our family. I don’t want to get into the difficulties of maternity leave, returning to work afterwards, and the work-life balance that takes a toll on every parent, but just know that I have thoughts – a lot of thoughts – about how ridiculous the current situations are.
It wasn’t that long ago that I was adament about being a working mom. Long before Finn was even a thought, I told anyone who would listen that I didn’t spend over five years in college and grad school to work for a few years and then quit my career. Even after Finn was born, I looked forward to going back to work and feeling like an adult. I craved constructive conversation and problem solving. I needed to be needed for more than just survival.
However, recently, I’ve given more and more thought to the idea of being a stay-at-home mom. The idea of being able to spend more time with Finn – to be the one teaching him nursery rhymes, to take him to the park, to go grocery shopping in the middle of a week – those thoughts put a smile on my face. Right now, we are living for the weekends. We try to cram it all into two days, and that’s an exhausting way to live.
After work, I’m hardly my best self. Finn gets two hours with Mom and Dad before bedtime, and we are both exhausted from a long day at the office. More often than not, I’m looking forward to his bedtime so we can unwind. If for whatever reason we have to be out past seven, we may not even see Finn before he falls asleep. It’s a tough pill to swallow.
Of course, being a stay-at-home mom doesn’t come with it’s own problems. Being a mom is exhausting, period, and at least now I get a break. I am able to cherish those few hours before bedtime and the weekend days because they are are dedicated ‘mom time’. If I were to stay at home full-time, I would probably crave the adult interaction. The grass is always greener, amiright?
These thoughts have been on my heart lately and I’ve spent a lot of time thinking about it. It’s a conversation worth having and I’m intrigued at why and how other moms in similar situations made that decision. I’m not ready to give up my job. just yet, but I’m wondering if there is a sort-of hybrid option that would allow for more Finn time and not having to fully sacrifice my career. It’s definitely got me thinking…
Ladies – I’d love to hear your insight on this topic!