First of all, I'll start by saying that I am extremely grateful to have a job to help ends meet when so many others do not have this luxury. However, it's SO hard to keep this perspective when looking down at my 8 week old baby knowing that I have to leave him and go back to work tomorrow. It's rather gut wrenching. Maybe some don't feel that way and crave adult interaction during the day... that's cool... but that's not me. I know that staying home is just as exhausting because you're basically at the baby's beck and call but you get that time... that time that passes SO quickly and you can't ever get back. Maybe it will get easier?
I know it's not even remotely feasible for me to stay at home right now... trust me... no matter how many times I write the numbers, they don't change. It's certainly not because we live some lavish lifestyle or drive new cars or have a big house. Our debt is not made up of a lot of stuff. We rent a 2 bedroom condo. We have a small car payment because my husband got a job (that we are very thankful for) 30 something miles away and it made sense for us to get a car that was good on gas rather than him drive his truck. I had surgery to help me lose weight and give me a healthier life. We were forced to pay the IRS a chunk of money with the sell of our house. I have student loans (who doesn't?). We now have a ton of medical bills from my high-risk pregnancy and Maddox's birth. Darren even works a part time second job (from home a couple nights a week) to help make ends meet and I would desperately like to figure out a way that he could quit without putting us in a worse situation so we could enjoy those evenings as a family.
I'm trying to tell myself to give it a year and then re-evaluate things. In the grand scheme of things, one year is nothing. But add a baby to that and I think about all the things I will miss out on. We are very thankful that Darren's mom is keeping Maddox and for the amount we would pay a very inexpensive daycare (do those even exist??). But the selfish mommy side of me says no one but myself is good enough to take care of him and it's not fair that I don't get to spend those extra 8 hours a day with him. I try to remind myself that I get every evening, every overnight feeding, every weekend, etc.... but gosh... it sure doesn't make it any easier. It also makes me feel extremely guilty to consider adding any time for just me in there. Like moms don't feel 100% more guilty for things after having a child already. I know I do it to myself but I'm not sure how to deal with it all. Darren jokes and says "maybe you need to go talk to somebody". Well this is my form of doing that... regardless if anyone responds.
On top of not wanting to go back to work is the dilemma of how does one juggle everything else in life? How am I supposed to work 8 hours, spend quality time with my husband and son, keep the house clean, laundry done, eat healthy, exercise (what?!), and maybe get a decent night sleep before waking up to do it all over again? I've read articles and blogs and forum posts about other mothers returning to work and this is the kind of stuff I found... "You get creative with your time"... what does that even mean? I don't have the energy to get creative. "You set your priorities"... that's all you've got for me? I suppose if I had done that many years ago, I may not be in this mess now. "You play the hand you've been dealt"... so basically that just says you deal with it and move on. "You make sacrifices"... yeh, no kidding. Ugh.
I feel pretty certain that I will need to stay away from Facebook starting tomorrow. Maybe now will be a good time to just go ahead and take a little break from the social media world. I would say a good 90-95% of my friends are stay at home moms. I really need to build some new friendships with people who work outside of their home and have positive attitudes about it. Those people exist right? And how do I add that to my ever growing list of things to do? lol
So here's to a good vent session and encouragement to make a long goal list for 2015. If I figure out how to turn working into a positive thing... I'll pass along the info. Until then, I will just continue to pray that God shows me the silver lining to it all.