Monday, June 11, 2012

semi-angsty post, ahoy


If you've been visiting these parts for a tick or so now, you've likely noticed I've been struggling for content.

Perhaps you're denying it -- If we were having drinks together, you'd shake your head emphatically... maybe give me the wide Bambi eyes.

You're kind to put on a front, but it's true. If it's not a crappy iPhone photo with a recipe link, a monthly bebe update, or a cloth diaper {do I have ALL THE WORDS for freakin' cloth diapers, or what?}, it's pretty much been Radio Silence over here.

While I know there's no obligation of explanation, I'm hoping by hammering out these thoughts I'll work towards a solution... and by "a solution," I mean "returning to my loudmouth tendencies per usual."

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I wrote what appears above on Friday... and then wrote a whole helluva lot more. Then reread it all and cringed so hard, I'm sure I have a few new crow's feet. It was self-indulgent and whiny and just... ick.

The plain truth of it - unadorned and de-thesaurus-ed - is this:

I'm having some trouble with this Mom Stuff.

Not being one... My daughter is 14 pounds of pure, marshmellowy joy. I don't often find myself employing the word "blessed" -- I hear it so frequently it has lost much of its oomph -- but there's no better way to describe how I feel in the morning when I see that face beaming up at me. She is funny and gorgeous and spunky and outspoken and happy, and I am lucky beyond words to call her mine. Because she is who she is, being her mother is the easiest thing in the world even in the moments {hours} {days} of struggle, when I'm positive I'm doing it all wrong.

No, it's being "just a mom" that fills me full of insecurity and doubt.

You see, I am the reluctant stay-at-homer... Yes, leaving my employment was the right decision - both professionally and logistically. I'd done all the growing I was going to do as an attorney in the past two years in my previous position, and hell if I was going to spend an extra 2 or 3 hours commuting on top of my workday when there is a nugget at home that needs a-squeezing. And that's all fine and good... but the fact remains I have never seen myself putting my career on hold to raise a child.

When I was pregnant, folks asked me all the time if I was planning on returning to work. My answer was always followed by a million qualifiers...


Oh I would definitely be returning to work if it weren't for the commute.


I'm leaving this position, but only because it's actually a really great time to make a professional transition.


I am so lucky to be able to take a little time off while I figure out what my next move career-wise will be.


All of those things are true, of course, but I think of that woman - so desperately trying to tell everyone around her DON'T WORRY! IT'S NOT LIKE I'M REALLY QUITTING AND BECOMING SOMEONE WHO WEARS YOGA PANTS EVERYDAY AND ONLY TALKS ABOUT SLEEP SCHEDULES - I see her in my head and I cringe {yep, more crow's feet}.

You know that little bit of insecurity we all carry with us? That part of me needed that Lady Lawyer Hat. And no adorable, giggling baby was going to coax it out of my hot little hands.

Now the question I get on the weekly is "don't you love being able to stay at home?"

The answer is yes. Every time she smiles, every time she discovers something new, every time she snuggles into my neck, every time she cries and I'm able to soothe her... Yes, I do. I do love it.

And sometimes... I'm not afraid to say... the answer is no. There are days when I realize I've spent more time trying to prevent the dog from making a snack of drool on L's face than I have in an adult conversation. There are times when my brain longs to read something that doesn't rhyme. And, yes, there have been evenings when I've taken off my yoga pants to attend a social event where I feel I have nothing to contribute to the conversation save for my opinions on sleep schedules. It's like Diarrhea of the Mouth: Mommy Edition.

This work vs. home dichotomy isn't unique and discussing it isn't all that interesting. It's a tale as old as... Rosie the Riveter, or Woodstock, or the 1980s shoulder-padded power suit. In other words, the internal struggle isn't the problem. I'm confident that I'll work it all out -- find the right balance, whatever that may mean -- in my own time. Because while I've come to understand you can't have everything, I know I have so much more than enough.

No, the problem is the answer to the "and what do you do?" question. At the moment, I'm "just a mom." I'm having a mental block with that label. And when I say mental, I mean literally and in an early-90s-Bill-&-Ted sort of way... the latter because I know many brilliant, talented, witty women who inspire me and who also happen to be "just moms." It would never cross my mind to think less of them for their decision to stay at home {whether temporarily or indefinitely}... because they are so much more than that one qualifier. So why do I assume outsiders will forget my other characteristics and accomplishments just because I've given birth? And more importantly, even if they did, why the hell would I care?

A funny thing. Anne wrote a post more than two months before L was even born in response to an op-ed on this exact subject. I found her post to be so thoughtful that I bookmarked it... and then promptly forgot it existed. Proof that the universe sometimes gives us exactly what we need, I rediscovered Anne's words whilst searching my Reader for a shrimp recipe. Talk about Soul Balm. Or at least Soul Prozac.

I don't want to be that woman in the salon chair... red-faced after a stylist "reduced" her to "mere" mom status. I don't want to be the woman who frantically qualifies her responses to casual cocktail party queries. And I don't want to be the woman who fails to open her mouth {or publish posts!} for fear that what she has to say will be written off as boring or of little consequence.

That's not the woman my mama raised me to be... nor is it the example I want to set for my daughter.

Untitled

...My beautiful, brilliant, bubbly daughter who is by far my greatest accomplishment -- no qualifiers in sight.

46 comments:

  1. I heart you Kate! I was more than happy to sit next to you and chat on Saturday, or any day. You'll figure it out. Because you're you.

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  2. Best of luck in figuring it out. I'm going through a similar battle to define myself in terms of work/life/expectations, and I know that it's not an easy task. Here's to finding an answer that is best for you and your family!

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  3. I can't speak to that struggle, as I'm only halfway through college, but I can tell you how much I enjoy reading your blog. It doesn't matter what the post is about; your writing is so sharp and so enjoyable. (You make cloth diapers incredibly interesting!) I will be reading until you stop posting....which I really hope is never, because my Reader would be a lot more boring without you.

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  4. I never comment on blogs. Period. This blog post warrants a comment. One of immense gratitude for being real. So many times women, especially on blogs, have this need to show how their efforts make them the super mom of the day and how the mere utterance of frustration makes them a "bad" mother. I don't have kids yet, but I know that when I do, there will be days FILLED with frustration. Thanks to your post, I know it wouldn't make me an asshole to voice my frustrations; just human. Thanks for being true to yourself and sharing with others.

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  5. Good luck! I think you'll know when the time is right to re-enter the workforce.

    I decided before my boy (a week or so older than L- they had the same EDD!) was born that he'd be home with his Dad from 3ish months and, although I gave myself permission to "un" decide, I sort of felt like it was the status quo. Cue lots and lots of back to work angst happening right now!

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  6. I've been a lawyer for ten years... Why don't you look into doing research projects/motion writing on a contract basis from home? You could take on as little or as much as you wanted and fit it in whenever. It might help you feel a little more focused, gives you an opportunity for adult conversation, and you could earn a couple of bucks. Plus, it is good to keep your skills up. You could put a really small ad in the bar magazine or if there is some kind of a list serv, get it posted on there.

    Just a thought. Julia

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  7. You will find the balance that you are looking for, it just takes time. I think most moms experience some degree of angst on their decisions no matter which one they make (on to stay home/work outside the home, bottle feed/breastfeed, cloth diaper/disposable...etc. The best you can do is be true to yourself.
    Also, having a baby makes us all a little brain dead. I can barely hold a cohesive conversation lately that doesn't include some kind of reference to sleep or poop. Ugh.

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  8. I've discussed this situation with so many people lately, I could probably write a book on the subject (or at least a novella). My problem is that Dell Harper has sucked all the ambition right out of me. I no longer care about the various boards I serve on. I no longer care about bringing in business or billing tons of hours. I no longer give a shit about my career in general. As you know, this lack of desire or drive is not conducive to being an excellent attorney in a firm. As I have frantically run numbers and explored less stressful options, I have also felt that pull- if I'm not a lawyer what am I? But the thing is, I'll always be a lawyer. I'm not going to let my license lapse, and I will always have my JD.

    I really think it sucks though. I wish I was like some of my friends who are chomping at the bit to get back to work, but I am frankly miserable. It is tough being a woman. We end up in a lose lose situation where there is not a right answer, sigh.

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  9. I don't have any great words of wisdom but I just want to remind you not to forget about all of your other great traits- being an awesome friend should be near the top of the list.

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  10. i havent commented on your blog in quite sometime, but i felt compelled to this morning in regards to this post...

    i too quit my corporate career to stay at home with caroline (who is almost 3 months old now) and i am having a hard time adjusting to the SAHM status as well. i thought all throughout my pregnancy i would return, yet when my maternity leave was ending, i couldn't fathom leaving her at a daycare all day when i knew i should be the one doing it...walking away was really difficult, yet when i am at home i know i am doing the right thing for my daughter and our family as a whole since my husband travels a lot with his job.

    just know you're not alone and a lot of us out there don't want to be JUST a mom...i appreicate your honesty and letting us know how you feel because i am on board 100%!

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  11. Over a year in, I still have days where I struggle with staying home full time. I just remind myself that the time that they are this small is SOSHORT and we won't get it back. And hopefully you'll get to the point where you also have days where you are so happy to be at home - it came in time for me.

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  12. So interesting to read this post. I have the opposite issue. I don't have any children and probably won't in the future. I struggle with my identity in the same ways you are struggling with being "just a mom" I wonder what to say in social situtations etc. because I dont' feel that I bring anything to the discussion.

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  13. Thank you so much for the honesty in your post. Its refreshing to see. I find so many 'mommy bloggers' out there try to make life seem so perfect, when we all know its not...it can't be. As someone about 4 1/2 months pregnant at this point I intend to keep working. Thankfully I work from home, but I still think I'm going to have to get a sitter or nanny. I was raised by a single working mother, it was tough but I have so much respect for my mom and the hard work she put in to provide my brother and myself with everything we had, which wasn't much at the time. I don't knock SAHMs, sometimes I wish I could be one or wish I had one growing up. I know my whole world will turn upside down when our lil one finally greets us and what I think today will be a long lost memory. But right now I'm going to go back to work.

    Give yourself the credit you deserve and know that all will right itself in time. In the mean time get drunk with happiness over your sweet lil baby girl.

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  14. Oh. My. God. Right on the mark and well written, as always!
    I have defined myself, proudly and passionately, in relation to my profession (physics teaching) for the past 8 years. I took a one year leave of absence to give my son the best start in life I could manage. Now that childcare plans have fallen through and I'm unwilling to compromise, I am increasingly finding myself feeling adrift and aimless. I realize that I am super lucky to even have this problem; to have the choice to spend more time away from work outside of the home. I should be content and proud and passionate about where I'm at right now. But I am having a tough time right now and it has a lot to do with what I think I should be doing with my life, how I am comparing myself to working/professional moms, my worry that I will loose my 'edge' professionally, and my worry that I'm becoming a bore to every other adult around me.
    I don't have a solution, but it's nice to know I'm not alone. Thank you for sharing.

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    1. P.s. Don't stop writing about diapers! I just discovered extreme funkiness and am rereading you post plus helpful comments for advice/instructions on stripping

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  15. I'm less than two weeks from my due date and already wondering how I'm gonna weather mat leave - I have a small home based business and I am secretly grateful for the distraction and the excuse to use my brain on something else.

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  16. This issue is so hard. I am a lobbyist and am working 50 hours a week and my daughter is 6 months old. I was so excited for my maternity leave and thought I would love being home with my daughter. However, after two months of bed rest pre-delivery I was going crazy by the end of my leave. I was grateful to have the time at home with her but it was so hard and I struggled a lot. Now I'm back at work and honestly happy to be here but at the same time it is so hard to be away from her. Some mornings it is painful to leave her. I often wish I could work part time but alas my job can not be done part time and I just don't want to give it up. I suppose there is now easy answer. I think it's just really freaking hard to be a Mom period. No matter what situation you chose or are stuck with it's hard.

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  17. As a lawyer lady who may want to stay home for at least some time when we have kids, I think this post is really well-written, insightful and honest. I am sure I'll be grappling with many of these feelings one day.

    I have to add in that you are one of my favorite bloggers ever, I am always excited to see your posts pop up on my Google Reader and I feel like we could be friends in real life (haha, creepy much?). BUt seriously, you have such an awesome voice and that hasn't changed or diminished with your shifting roles in life. I really admire you for taking care of your daughter and continuing to be the sassy, intelligent, witty and hilarious Kate that you are.

    Monica

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  18. This is such a catch 22 and it stinks. But the truth is, you will figure it out. Perhaps you'll go back to work soon and maybe you won't. But the thing is, being a lawyer doesn't make you "Kate". Kate is a lawyer. But Kate is also a wife, a mom, a daughter, a great writer, and funny as hell. So you're never going to not have something to offer to a conversation, because you have so much to talk about.

    I struggle with this one a lot. But I finally realized, I'm happy now. I don't need to dissect why, I just need to know I'm happy. Sometimes I want to be home full time, sometimes I want a new job; but all in all, I'm happy. And that's what matters. I don't think as humans we'll ever be completely content in any situation because that's whats drummed into our heads. So we overthink. But don't doubt yourself girl. You will figure it all out.

    This may not make sense. I have tons of thoughts on this but suck at getting them out.

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  20. I can definitely relate to this post! I bumped into one of my old literature professors at a play on Saturday night, and when he asked me what I was doing these days, I meekly responded, "Not much. I'm just taking care of a three year old."

    Suffice it to say, the whole thing ruined my self esteem for much longer than it should have. Also, I'm highly suspicious of the fact that I didn't mention my part-time work as an editor and writer.

    I wish I could say that things get easier with time, but I've been trying to understand/adapt to my new identity since the day my daughter was born.

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  21. This is really timely for me too. Right now I am on an extended leave of absence at a job I'll return to in 14 more months when my daughter is 19 months old. Just the other day I was thinking about whether or not I have anything "interesting" to contribute anymore to social situations. People who work still are more inherently interesting, right? And then I sat back at two parties this weekend (while my mom was babysitting our baby) and listened to conversations about TV shows, sports, how much someone drank, etc. and realized that what I have to contribute these days is no more or less boring than anything anyone else has to contribute. Maybe we're all a little boring :) Anyways, best wishes with the struggle to define yourself. I think we all experience this no matter what our station in life.

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  22. And here I am struggling to explain to people that I will be returning to work (albeit PT) when my wee one arrives. I'd LOVE to be able to say "i'm a mom", but then again, working in a non-profit job that didn't require any extra schooling on my part, my career has never defined me. (not that yours does, but many of my gal pals who have advanced degrees seem to struggle with this more than those I know with a singular degree). Hopefully we'll start to see a societal shift that proves more accepting of Moms- regardless of what other, if any, title follows.

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  23. Well said! I am a stay at home mom now but I have two degrees. I always say, I'm at home now but I'd like to find the right part-time arrangement... blah blah blah. Because I feel judged in my super educated area to say stay at home mom period. But I wouldn't have it any other way. I love being with my baby girl all the time! Love it even if it is hard sometimes.

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  24. PS I am obsessed with sleep schedules too! Ha :) Please talk/post about them all you want!

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  25. Thanks for sharing. I don't have children yet but I often think of how hard it will be to balance a career and family. It is unfair that women have to fear being judged or thought of as less interesting at a party just because they became a mom. It seems that the best anyone can do is to simply do what works best for their family. L is gorgeous and you sound like one great mama!

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  26. What a beautiful, heartful and truthful post. My son was born a few weeks before your sweet little girl. I have enjoyed all your posts in pregnancy and motherhood. You have been a wonderful companion on this journey, thank you for all your wonderful posts. I'm feeling the exact same way as you right now. I know there is nothing I would rather do than be home and be a mom, but it's still so hard that I feel like I have to justify it to everyone. Sometimes it's really Much more of a challenge than I ever imagined it would be. I hope you can enjoy every moment and feel completely confident in your decision to be a full time mother.

    PS, I'd love to read all about your opinions on sleep schedules!

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  27. I always, always thought I would be a stay at home mom. I always thought it's what I wanted and I didn't really understand why women who didn't have to work did. And, then I had a baby. Ha! And, while she is a true joy (just like you describe L), but I kind of had an "aha" moment that I would need more. And, maybe that's selfish, but maybe it's not.

    Personally, I think that the moms I know who stay home do themselves an injustice by saying they are "just a mom". It's a hard job and honestly, I think my life is a bit easier by my choosing to work. But, again, that's just me.

    We all need to be better at being happy with what we have. I have a quote I refer to often that says, Never let the things you want make you forget the things you have. I have to remind myself of that often.

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  28. One more thought, I think the time in their children's lives that most women decide to stay home (and have to frankly) is when their children are the most demanding. They're babies and they require so very much. But, this is also what would make most women I know crave more since babies aren't great at reciprocating the love we give.

    It sounds blunt maybe, but once Julia started showing affection is when I had those pangs of wanting to just stay home and snuggle all day.

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  29. Breath of fresh air. Every part about becoming a mother changes you. Your greatest accomplishments fade in comparison to your new little joy. I'm not sure why we feel like we should add the qualifiers or apologize for our new jobs. Sure I don't clock a 9 to 5 and some days I call my husband 10 times just to have a 45 second adult conversation but, at the end of the day. This is it. It's the bee's knees. My son starts school next year and just the other day it hit me like a ton of bricks. This is the most important thing I have ever been entrusted with. His learning, his growth, keeping my marriage thriving. It's incredible. Hit that post button girl. I enjoy reading the recipes or mothering quips. ;) You are a fabulous example for that little queso.

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  30. This couldn't have come at a better time for me. I struggled with this when my daughter was born 19 months ago. I did have give up my position way earlier than that because I worked in education and we plan the following school year in April. Every April is the same. What to do? Look for a job? Or stay at home. It honestly is the hardest job I have ever had and yet it is hard to say that is what you do all day. My mother always said it was the title I was after (being an assistant principal at the ripe age of 28). And then my daughter will look at me and say out of the blue when she thinks something is funny, "Oh momma." And it melts my heart.

    Honestly, I love being at home with her and my 2 month old son. It wasn't planned that way but I know that when I am ready I can get back to the grind. I would love to lead a school and make a difference in my school district. However, it would brake my heart to know I was giving my best to something that isn't my own flesh and blood. So for now, I am just a mom.

    The best thing I ever did was join a professional mom's group. While it sets up play dates for your little ones, you also get that adult conversation with moms. My group had lawyers, doctors, etc in it so there was something always to talk about. Plus, it helped me get out of the house for something other than grocery shopping or church.

    Keep your post coming. I started reading you way before L was born, but have loved the journey throughout the process.

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  31. I have been a stay at home mom for 3.5 years and I still have an identity crisis on a daily basis. I was an airline captain in my former life. Now I go to play dates and scrape stickers off of the table (and everything else). But I know that this is just a short season in my life and I will miss it terribly when he starts school someday. And it will be exciting and interesting when I figure out what direction my career will take next. These thoughts occupy my head every single day. But I have accepted it because I know I will never regret putting my family first. But someday I might look back and regret putting my career first. Nobody that I know has ever looked back at their life and said I wish I had spent more time away from my kids. You are doing an awesome job with your little girl. She is lucky to have such a strong and smart female as a mother and a mentor. It helps to find other moms that are in the same position as you. Go out for girls nights and talk about it over a pitcher or two of margaritas!

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  32. I had two thoughts after reading your post:

    1. I was going to suggest, as Julia Steele did above, that there might be some part-time, from-home stuff you could do? One of my good friends in our neighborhood is a "lady lawyer" and a stay at home mom, and she spends one or two days/week (or maybe even just one or two afternoons/week) doing. . .stuff? I won't pretend to know what an attorney could do part time from home, I was an elementary school teacher before becoming a mama. But anyway. She has a college-age girl who babysits for her each week as needed, and I've always thought it seems like she has a great balance. Another friend in my neighborhood is a social worker and has office hours in a shared office (minimal rent) once or twice a week. . .I think she has a nanny two days/week so that she can do the work thing but also just have some time to do stuff without 3 kids even if she doesn't have appointments. Even though I'm honestly satisfied and secure in being a SAHM, there have been times that, just for financial reasons, her situation has made me wish that I had chosen a career that had an option of part time and/or from home work. . .at those times when my being able to earn a few $$$ would be really helpful to our family.

    The point is, the SAHM/working mother thing doesn't have to be black and white, all or nothing thing as long as you have a career that doesn't require you to be in a physical location during specific hours. You can get creative and find a solution that allows you to know that you truly are raising L, but you have a few hours every week to cultivate your own talents.

    2. There are a couple of commenters who said that they still struggle with this issue after 3 years or more, and while I really feel for those moms and their struggles, I was going to say just the opposite. I've been a SAHM for 6.5 years now, with a 6.5 year old and a 3.5 year old, and my thought on reading your post was that those early days with a new baby are the hardest for this particular struggle. Obviously, from those comments, not everyone feels that way. But I think that the satisfaction of staying home with an infant is in knowing that biologically, you are the one who is meant to be responding to their every need. Comforting them, breastfeeding them. . .you have the hormonal instincts to protect them with your very life. But the satisfaction I get from being at home with "bigger" kids (it's all relative, right?) is definitely less primal. At this point, with the ages my girls are now, I feel like I am able to give them things that they just couldn't get from daycare/a nanny. But those things are a lot less tangible and a lot harder to describe. One concrete thing I can say is that instilling confidence and feelings of self-worth into elementary-school aged girls could be a full-time job in itself, and I'm glad I'm here to really see and focus on her struggles, her learning curve as she enters the wider world (my 6 year old just finished kindergarten last week). So I have been thinking about the fact that as much as I felt absolutely vital to my girls when they were tiny babies, I am discovering that my role is even more meaningful to ME now that I am teaching them to interact with the world out there. It's hard to be a girl, you know? And I don't think anyone but a mom could possibly understand and respond to the intricacies of each child's personality as they learn to navigate the world.

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  34. First time commenter here, but with no insightful words of wisdom to offer. Just know that you aren't alone...and that it DOES get better!

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  35. Delurking here. No advice (still in the Lady Lawyer, No Kids stage), but wanted to chime in to say that when I started reading this post, before I saw where you were going with it, I thought you were lining up a "I'm taking some time off blogging" announcement and got very disappointed! I think your peeks into mamahood are funny and sweet, even the diapering ones :)

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  36. You rocked this post - couldn't relate more to the never ending saga that is being a stay at home mom! Love reading as always.

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  37. I have the opposite problem - ever since I was a little girl all I wanted was to be a stay at home mom. I was never very career oriented because THAT was supposed to be my career. I figured I'd work for a few years after college and then stay home and eventually work outside the home full or part time after the kids were older. After several years of infertility, I feel like I don't know WHO I'm supposed to be because I never imagined a life without kids. I was "supposed" to be a mom. Not to say that it won't happen eventually, but things certainly haven't turned out the way I had expected! It's funny how we all have these pictures in our heads of how our lives are supposed to turn out and it rarely ever happens that way! :)

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  38. Thank you for writing this. I loved it and it was very brave of you. I worry and think about this all the time even though I am not done school and pregnant with my first little guy. Very eye opening. Please follow up!

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  39. I can really relate to this post. I was a teacher for 10 years before staying home with my son who is 21 months old. We are expecting our second baby in December so I will be staying home for longer. I had a really hard time at the beginning. I felt very isolated and alone as we have no family in the area and my husband has a very demanding job. Everyone kept telling me how lucky I was and all I kept thinking was really? I love my son and some days are spectacular-he's in a good mood, eats well, naps well, etc. But there are days that are not so fun and seem to last forever! One thing that really helped me was joining a mom's group. I always thought it was cheesy but I have met some great moms and I have learned about some great activities/places to take kids. Whether you work or stay home, your daughter is so lucky to have you!

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  40. Enjoy this time. It goes by so fast. Before you know it she will be trying to find the right prom dress that she wants and you approve. Embrace this at home time now, knowing that one day when the opportunity presents itself and it all fits, you may consider a job outside of the home. For now enjoy, don't worry if your day is spent washing diapers and just holding her. One day (believe me on this) you will be watching her walk out the door to go out on a date and all you will think of is "Why did I let staying at home with her define me and upset me so." Soak up all her cuteness and snuggliness. You will not regret these days. Enjoy them, bask in the freedom of being able to stay there with her and know you are providing her with love and security. You have no urgent business meeting, you have no deadline, you have all the time in the world to love her and surround her days in hugs and kisses.

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  41. Hi there... one of the other bloggers I read regularly (when I find the time) posted on this topic recently too. http://thatwifeblog.com/2012/06/07/just-a-mom/

    I've got a 6 month old. And I'm working part-time. I struggled with that decision as well because I always thought I would stay home. Financially, this worked out better. All of our paths are different, but we are all just trying to do the best we can for our kiddos. I had a discussion recently about whether parenthood in general is a career or not. Obviously it isn't, in the formal sense of the word, but it is work. Work that we choose. Work that some never get to do. I cherish my time at home, but getting out some also keeps me sane. I'm babbling. You're not alone. And there are tons of us "out here" reading your posts and coming to that same conclusion... Keep writing.

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  42. its ok, i feel this way 92% of the time. i'm the only one of my girlfriends to have a baby. most of the time when we get together i feel like all i have to bring to the table are updates on what my son his doing. i don't (usually) have funny stories about when i went out the other night or about the latest awesome spontaneous thing i did. sometimes it makes me feel sad and long for the days when would get off work, decide to go to a pub, sit outside, drink a beer and watch the people walk by. but then i remember that i did something amazing. i gave birth to another human being. he is awesome and waiting for me when i come home. yeah i feel out of touch sometimes, but for now that is ok. i'm right where i'm meant to be.

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  43. I love you. All transitions (permanent or not) are hard--especially when you feel like something that used to define you has been replaced by a whole new (albeit fabulous) label: Leighton's Mom. The fact of the matter is, though you are a Mom and a fantastic one at that, you are so much more. You are an incredible wife to E, you are a loving daughter to your parents, you are a steadfast and loyal best friend to me and countless others. In addition to ALL of this, you are an intelligent, successful, extremely well-educated woman with a lifetime of accomplishments under your belt all before the age of 30. You have made a choice in the true, self-sacrificing name of motherhood, to do what is best for you, for L., and for your family. You'll find your groove in this whole thing and I know you will find your balance. Just know that all who love you are beyond impressed with the grace, ease, and natural finesse that you have shown in your new role. I love you!

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  44. I heart you, Kate! That's all... and hopefully enough :-)

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  45. I've wanted to comment on this post since I read it a week ago. All I can say is that I nodded my head "yes" through every word. The transition to motherhood may feel natural, but that doesn't mean it's easy. You will figure it out! L is so lucky to call you her momma.

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happy little comments!