Have you ever gotten exactly what you wished for, and then wonder why you wanted it in the first place? The reason I haven't blogged AT ALL in the last 5 months is because I got a job. A full time job. Something just for me, so I could feel fulfilled. Yay me! I also now have guilt, stress, exhaustion and a longing for the way things were.
Until recently I had not worked full time since I becoming a mother, except for when I was a nanny and took my oldest son to work with me. Since then I have worked as a server and bartender, and I have been a real estate agent for a few different local firms. I am fortunate enough to have a husband who is willing to stay home with the kids while I work nights and weekends. He does a good share of the household chores and he does most of the cooking. I really can't complain. But I did.
As much as I loved being home with my kids, I didn't feel like my work was fulfilling to me personally. I felt unchallenged intellectually, and felt my chances of using the education that my parents paid for were slipping away with each passing day. In addition, as the kids got older, and we had more of them, I started to resent having to share my nights and weekends with work obligations. It was necessary for me to be earning something, but I didn't want to give up my family time to do it. So my solution was to put my youngest son in daycare and get a full time day job. I wanted to prove (mostly to myself) that I was more than "just a mom" with a sewing machine, a crazy sweet tooth and a blog. I needed to show the world that I had more to offer and I could do it between the hours of 9am and 5pm, so my family time would be uninterrupted.
So about 6 months ago I applied for a job with a small staffing agency. The owner saw something in me that she could work with and she ended up offering me the Staffing Coordinator position with her company. She said I would be difficult to "sell" to her clients because I had never had a full-time office job, but I had a lot of marketable and translatable skills that she could utilize and enhance upon. I was thrilled. Ecstatic even! Finally, somebody saw me as something other than a wife, mother, or caretaker.
I began my job in June and by July I had already received a raise. By August I was on the fast track to becoming a senior recruiter and the head of business development. I felt like a million bucks! I never saw coming what happened next.
On the way home from work one day I received a phone call that my mother was in the hospital. Three weeks later, and on my son's 3rd birthday, she died. It.was.awful. I'll save the details for another time, but suffice it to say that after losing 2 parents in 4 years, I was very overwhelmed with grief. I managed to suppress that grief by focusing on my job, and all of the new obligations that my mother's death bestowed upon me. But instead of giving me comfort, my job has done nothing but cause me more stress. I am just trading one emotion for another.
It's amazing how the death of a loved one causes us to reorganize our priorities. All of a sudden, my need to feel fulfilled seems so petty compared to the needs of my family. I had everything that I (previously) wanted, but I was no longer happy! I probably should have quit my job immediately when my mother got sick, but hind sight is always 20/20, right?! I didn't quit right then for a number of reasons, but mainly it was because I'm a chicken and I hate confrontation. It's also because I have been trained and groomed more than any person in my position before me. I am literally half of our staff, and my boss has come to rely on me heavily.
It was so hard to tell her that I needed to leave, but I finally did it. It was a huge weight lifted from my shoulders! My last day is December 16th and I am looking forward to spending more time with my friends and family, and giving back through volunteering!