Friday, February 10, 2012
thoughts on returning to work
In June of 2011, I started working again for the first time since having Brooke. Prior to that, I was tutoring a student-- very short hours (think 1-2 hours a week). When I started working, my mom had just retired and I transitioned myself by working about 5-6 hours a week. Then I took another job, working about 10 hours a week. I started my new job in the beginning of January and am up to about 17 hours a week, which translates to approximately 20 hours a week including travel time.
I have to be honest. When I frst gave birth, I couldn't imagine leaving my precious little one with another human being. She was mine and I soaked up every single minute with her. People would tell me as she got older, "you can find a job now! She's getting older and you'll probably want some space..." I would nod and smile, but really just couldn't picture it.
Then I started feeling the *itch*. The itch that said I had a college degree-- nope, wait, two college degrees-- and yet I was staying at home with my daughter, who wasn't really a baby anymore. The itch that said I missed real adult company in which conversations didn't revolve around what your kid can do and what I should be working on with Brooke. The itch that told me Vance and I could be living a heck of a lot more comfortable if only we had two incomes instead of one.
Of course I shushed those feelings and instead felt guilty as heck for thinking those thoughts. Wasn't I lucky to be able to watch my babe grow? Shouldn't I be counting my lucky stars I had this opportunity to be with her?
Of course. But now that I have returned to work (part-time), I must say that I feel ... satisfied. I enjoy going to work, knowing that my girl is learning to be independent from me for a little while. Knowing that she will need these skills to start preschool. I enjoy talking to adults about work-related topics. And I ENJOY knowing that our bank account is not depleting because I am staying at home. Knowing that we have a teeny tiny more of a cushion so I won't feel awful treating myself to Starbucks or McDonald's iced coffee every day. (Teehee)
So being on both sides of the fence, here's my conclusion: do what is right for your family. Your situation. I loved being at home with Brooke while I was. I loved taking her to the park everyday, enrolling her in Tiny Tots, fully experiencing being a stay at home mom. I was able to exclusively nurse her for the first year of her life. I loved that she was comforted by, cared for and loved by me all day and night. And what's funny is that now that I'm working... she is STILL comforted by, cared for and loved by me all day and night. And what's funny, is that she doesn't even miss me when I'm gone! ♥