Rolling With the Punches

Subtitled: And Feeling Oh So Good

This week, I started my new job and the kids enrolled in daycare.  What I thought would be a difficult experience turned into the best week of my life.  Yes the babes cried a little when I dropped them off, but I knew they would be fine.  And they were.

In fact, the times before I drop them off and after I pick them up, are better than they ever were when I stayed home with them.  The biggest difference is quality.  When I’m home, I am not on the computer, lying on the couch, or doing all the other things I used to do.  Instead, we read stories, play games, and cuddle.  I smother them with love and they return it willingly.

This week was busy and by the last day, I felt weary and sore.  Yet, like all good workouts, I felt pumped. I have been happy, playful, and someone I actually want to be around.  It’s helped that Ben has had a “bye week” in school so transitioning from staying at home to working has been smooth for all parties.

My place of employment wouldn’t be considered prestigious in much of the world’s eyes, but, frankly, I would take fulfillment over prestige any work day.  The demographic I work with is exactly who I want to work with after I get my master’s degree and all the other GRAND plans I have for the future; thus, finding employment in a non-profit organization–at the grassroots level–now is basically like interning before I even start graduate school.

I suppose I wrote this because I have read so many accounts of women who bemoan the fact that they must work and leave their kids in a caretaker’s hands and all week I have been waiting for those emotions to arise.  They haven’t and this tells me something: loving where you work really takes the edge off of not seeing your kids.  It also alleviates the stress of being a mother by allowing me to get out of the house and in to a more productive environment.  The big thing, for me, is that I went to work because I wanted to, not because I had to.  Yes we need the money, but not to the point of if-I-don’t-get-a-job-we’ll-starve.  It’s more for the future.  So I had time to find a job I wanted and now that I’ve started, I am feeling so good that I have to pinch myself to make sure I haven’t drifted off into dreamland or some other alternate reality.

I am sure that Ben’s workload will increase dramatically again this week, so I will be back on-line again if only to share the tales of my increasingly fairy-tale-like life.   You know, the fairy tales that no one has ever heard: The abstract and eye-brow raising ones that sound made up.  Yeah, those reflect my life far more than Cinderella ever did. Thank the stars.

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17 Comments

Filed under Feminism

17 responses to “Rolling With the Punches

  1. I have read some research, a long time ago, that working parents today spend more quality time with their kids than stay-at-home moms did in the 50s. I think there is an awareness and intentionality that working parents today have that is so beneficial to children – counteracting the popular christian notion that women who work are harming or neglecting their children in some way.

  2. Awesome, glad it is going smoothly for all the family. I've been wondering how you've been and how the job's been going, so thanks for keeping us updated! 🙂

  3. I'm so glad you've found an interesting job! Feeling passionate about what one does, being intentional about how one spends time – more than anything else, I'm pretty sure these are what make for a happy fulfilled life.

  4. So glad to hear that the transition went well. Everyone wins when Mom is happy.

  5. Sunshine

    I am so happy for you. Good job.

  6. I can completely see where the you'd spend after a day at work would be more rewarding and fulfilling than spending all day with them. I'm glad things are going well.

  7. Mrs V.

    My mom always worked (and my dad, too) – pretty much started again right after my birth. I was in daycare or at my grandparents. Later often at friends. I had the best childhood you can imagine, and I was pretty capable of doing certain things before my peers. I remember still the situation, when a friends would be too shy to order an ice-cream and had to ask his mom, while I would say to his mom 'oh don't worry, I just order it for both of us, you can stay here in the car!'. Being emotionally close to your kids is important (and my parents were and are close to me), but I think kids learn a lot, when not always around their parents. Also, I find – in general/in the big picture/worldwide – women need to be a role model to show their kids that education and work and being able to earn money and therefore be self-sufficient, not to forget to model how important meaningful occupation is for your mental well-being. Congrats on starting to work again! In my opinion the best you can do. If someone is of opposite opinion, I respect that, too of course – this is just my 2 cents.

  8. I'm glad you're enjoying your new job and new schedule. Good luck next week!

  9. Lauren

    I'm so glad you're enjoying work! I tell people that I honestly believe I'm a better mom when I can get away for a bit each week. It's so great to socialize with other adults, use my education, increase my knowledge and help better the world outside of my home. Then, I come home excited to see Aidan and play with him.

  10. I'm excited for you — both that it went so well and that you've found something you love. I can't wait to hear about Em and Andy's transition to daycare. They'll be learning all kinds of new things — mainly all the things you don't want them to know. 😉

  11. Elizabeth

    Yeah! I'm glad you're liking your job and the kids are adjusting. That's seriously so awesome! Especially since you're feeling so good! Kelsey's turning 2 this week. Can you believe it? We're having a family/friend party again and I was a little sad when I realized you guys wouldn't be there. Oh well. We'll have to resort to sending you pictures. 😉

  12. Yay! This happiness and contentment is well-deserved, friend. I hope it continues for a long, long, long time!

  13. Good for you Amber! You're inspiring!

  14. I'm so happy for you! 🙂 And so glad it was a pretty smooth transition.

  15. I am SO glad your transition has gone smoothly. It's a whole new world!

  16. Congratulations! High five lady!

  17. I am so very happy for you!!!