I feel as though I have woken up and suddenly, out of nowhere, I am a stay-at-home Mom. Obviously this didn't happen overnight - there were lots of small decisions along the way that have led to me being at home - but that's what it feels like. It feels like one day I was working and trying to carve out a career for myself, and the next day I wasn't. How did this happen?
I'm struggling with this new vocation. Let me just say upfront that I am beyond grateful to be in a position where I have the choice to be home, but I'm trying to come to terms with how difficult it feels. Maybe I just wasn't meant to stay home? Maybe if I didn't have dreams and ambitions of my own it would all feel easier and I would drink in every moment with my growing girls? I know that one day I will long for this time back, the time when a naked bum can still be seen running across the room, but lately all I can dream about is a time when I can get back to myself. And then I worry: when that time comes, will I be to old? Will my chance be gone?
How did our Mothers do it? My Mom had FOUR children (I seem to almost be unable to handle two), no babysitters and no cleaning lady. She worked as a classical violinist until her third child was born, and then part-time selling make-up and toys. When we were all past the toddler stage she went back to school and became a Midwife. She has opened two Midwifery practices in Ontario and has an inspiring career. Am I missing something? Was it somehow easier raising kids back then? Could it be that having two kids is more difficult than four??
I have many role models around me - women who have managed to raise their children and have thriving careers - but I'm still worried I might get left behind. In the midst of all the cooking, cleaning, grocery shopping, school drop-offs and playdates, everything else seems so very far away.
Despite my struggles, I want to be home. I want to be the one who picks my kids up from school and cooks their food and knows their friends. I want my girls to have a solid foundation, a happy home, and I want to protect them from this crazy world we are living in. I know, on some level, that this is the most important work I will ever do. But I also know that if I don't find some way to balance it all out, I will go crazy!