I hope you had a great weekend and are ready to hit the ground running this week!
I’m feeling a bit reflective today, as it’s the one year anniversary of my dropping out of corporate life. Instead of “leaning in”, I’m “leaning out”, and I couldn’t be happier with my decision, even though it was much more difficult to take the leap than what I would have imagined.
My kids are now 15, 13 and 8 and life. is. busy. Not that it isn’t busy with smaller kids, but it’s a different kind of busy, if that makes any sense. Our evenings don’t belong to us, but rather, to baseball games, football practices and Girl Scout meetings. The work of raising children has changed from being physically intensive – diaper changes, late night feedings, and playing dinosaurs – to emotionally charged, dealing with hormones and homecoming dances, driver’s licenses and dating.
Upon my departure from corporate life, one of my friends said, “I think it’s one of the great myths of motherhood that your children need you at home when they’re little. I think they need you even more when they’re older.” First off, let me say that I am in no way diminishing being home with your kids when they’re young. I took extended leave when my kids were born and worked part-time when they were little, so I could spend more time with them. It is important, valuable and meaningful, and I still miss the days when my kids were toddlers and I was the center of their universe. That time in life is exhausting, both physically and emotionally, and I don’t think you can fully appreciate it until you are looking back, reflecting upon it with some perspective. I think my memories of that time are much more blissful than I felt sometimes while I was actually living it.
But, the stakes become even higher when your kids are making their way through adolescence, and the decisions they make can have long-term repercussions.
I have learned some things about myself this past year too. You have a lot of ideas of what life will be like, moving from corporate life to home, and those ideas don’t always pan out the way you think they will.
- I’m a procrastinator. I used to blame working for not getting things done, but in all reality, I put things off, plain and simple. I work best under pressure. Why is that??
- I stink at meal planning. Or maybe I just have overly finicky kids, because I have a hard time pulling together a dinner that makes everyone happy.
- Laundry in my house will never be fully complete, regardless of how much time I have to do it. If you pay me a visit, there will be dirty clothes in my laundry room.
- I envisioned tapping into my creative side on a daily basis, painting furniture, writing amazing blog posts, finishing all of those projects that have been on my to-do list. But daily life gets in the way, and the days are much shorter than I imagined they would be. And a I still have a work-in-progress garage sale desk in my garage.
- On most days you will find me in my workout clothes since it doesn’t make sense to shower early in the day since I’m going to be running around, working on projects, in the yard, etc… I swore that wouldn’t happen. However, let it be said that I do shower every day. 🙂
- After a year, the bon-bon jokes from my family have still not gotten old.