i’m saying goodbye to my green …

(Sorry – it’s long, but worthwhile … I think!)

Yep, I’m off to one heck of a start in 2010 – as promised! One part of this change is the commitment to see things in a more positive light. Typical me is to get started with one negative and let it snowball, leading me right to where I was at the end of 2009 – completely depressed and absolutely miserable. Instead of letting the negatives snowball this year, I am instead focusing on the positives and letting them snowball. So far, so good!

One of my biggest issues has been with this whole working mom thing. It’s absolutely and utterly exhausting. Dizzying, even. I had no idea it would be so hard – so busy, so tiring, so chaotic and crazy. Truthfully, though I envy stay at home moms for a number of reasons, I know I wouldn’t make it – it takes a very strong and dedicated person, and it’s just not for me. Ideally, something part-time would be perfect, but it’s not going to happen, so here I stay.

Admittedly (and rather embarrassingly), I’ve had some seriously bitter thoughts towards stay at home moms in general. I’ve been disgustingly green with envy. I’ve been downright, all out jealous. I know they have their gripes, too, and we all know that the grass is always greener on the other side for all of us. But seriously, I’d give my left arm for the opportunity to spend so much time with Peanut, to run errands during the week, for the chance to meet friends and family members for coffee and shopping, and to have time here and there for chores around the house. A nap from time to time? Heck yeah – I’m game! It’s sounding more enticing than my rat race life with each passing second!

Back to the point. I could continue on with comparisons from my limited and skewed perspective, but that’s not going to get me anywhere further along on my journey toward happiness – instead, it would only be two steps back in life’s delicate dance. Rather than thinking of the negatives in being a working mom, from now on, I’m going to focus on the positives. This life, even with the exhaustion factor, is incredible! I’m not even going to list the negatives or compare what I live with what could be because it’s pointless. Instead, and without further ado, here are many reasons why my crazy life as a “working mom” rocks!

(NOTE: This list is in no way a comparison of working mom vs. SAHM or any other situation for that matter, but is merely a list of positives for my particular situation. I’m sure some of these would appear on other’s lists, too, regardless of particulars.)

  • Believe me, I can get more done in a few hours than some could even imagine. It’s that thing called pressure, and baby, I feel it! There’s no time for slacking, and no off days! I always have a mission. Always.
  • Downtime certainly doesn’t exist, either. Eh, unless you want to consider those few precious moments before falling asleep downtime. No rest for this mama!
  • I can speed shop like it’s nobody’s business. There’s always a list and never time for perusing – that’s how it goes … All. The. Time.
  • Yes, I get lunch hour shopping trips … alone! In fact, much of my shopping, with the exception of groceries, is done during lunch. Always nice to get out of the office, too!
  • Functioning on minimal sleep is a mastered art, and I’ve got it down. That little girl has some serious sleep issues, and the hours between 10-ish pm and 5 am are in no way, shape or form restful for my husband and I. We play good walking zombies each and every day!
  • There’s a beautiful balance in responsibility. Though it took a while to iron out to our liking, both my husband and I have what I would consider fairly equal roles in our daughter’s care. That man truly is an amazing dad, and will play a huge role in Peanut’s future. Awesome!
  • Likewise, we both have household responsibilities because I simply cannot do it all by myself.
  • There’s no time for details. True, this is both a plus and a minus, but there’s no wasted time on that which goes unnoticed most of the time anyway.
  • Wow, what a great way to determine what’s important and what’s not! What has to get done gets done, and what doesn’t is left behind. There are only 24 hours in a day, right?
  • The separation anxiety factor is lessened because we are forced to share Peanut with others. I’ll never be 100% okay with leaving my little one with a trusted family member or friend, but it’s easier because I have to do it 5 days a week. In her nearly 8 months of life, she’s been overnight without us 3 times! (Sure, those days and nights away have been torture, but they are possible! I also believe that it’s a positive experience for everyone involved.)
  • Our time together is so precious. I appreciate every minute I have with our little Peanut because we don’t have 24/7 … the waking hours are more like 3.5/5 during the week and 12.5/2 on the weekends. Sad, but true. Though it’s so little time, that time is amazing!
  • Days off are utterly euphoric! Whether a surprise or planned, every minute of these days feels just like Christmas as a kid. I’m typically selfish, too, and don’t share these bonus days with anyone else – they’re our little secret, at least until they’re over!
  • I get adult time 5 days a week. Granted, it’s at work, involves little socialization, and is highly impersonal, but it’s adults!
  • My commute, when I’m feeling positive, is a beautiful time. It’s 45 to 60 minutes of thinking time for me. Quiet, peaceful, and relaxing (Minus the traffic!).

Wow, I didn’t know I had so many positives to this working mom thing – I am blessed! Funny – I’m feeling better already, and am pleased with the decision to leave the boring negatives and unnecessary comparisons behind. My life IS good, and my days of being green with envy are over! How’s that for sticking to a New Year’s resolution?!

If you are currently struggling with a similar negative, I challenge you to do the same – look at what’s good in your life, list it out just like this, and leave the bad behind. Unless you can change it, it’s not worth spending time and energy on. Who needs the negative anyway, right?

I’m not 100% back to me just yet, but this is one huge hurdle along the way – and it’s been overcome! Here’s to hoping the next challenge is just as freeing!

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