Thursday, December 13

The Equation...


I once wrote, when I was contemplating my return to work, that I get to matter in the family equation too—that I get to count. Being a good mom does not mean giving all of oneself over to your children. I was clear that it is important that I get to have a me that is more than 'just' (OK - shockingly poor choice of words) a mom.

So, I returned to work as a way of 'mattering' in the family equation and the larger world equation. It wasn't that I didn't feel that I was making a difference, because for my children, I was making the world. But there needs to be something...

More? No.

Different. Something of me that is for me that matters beyond familial constraints.

HA! How is that for vague? But it is what it is - vague and more than a little ambivalent.


And, as always, with every (vague) answer comes more questions. Was all that simply me rationalizing my decision to work? The answer to that question depends on when you ask me, but I can tell you that the transition back to work has been a bit brutal.

Not, apparently, for my kids. They LOVE school, adore their teachers and can't get enough of their new friends. Not for DH, who is "happy if I'm happy" and thrilled with the new HDTV that my added income enabled us to buy.

No. Not for them.

But for me, after what seems like years of transitions and adjustments, this has been tougher than I ever imagined. And for very different reasons than I anticipated.

My heart actually, physically, hurts when I think:
• of the time that I'm missing with my girls.
• about our worlds—no longer revolving solely around each other.
• of the giggles that we no longer share, and worse yet, that they now share with another.
• of the scrapes, bruises and hurt feelings that I'm not there to sooth.

It's not about guilt. It's about loss. I, we, have lost something or at least a piece of it. Something important and precious.

Have I made the wrong decision? Are we headed down the wrong path?

I'm not ready to say either way, just yet. I just know that this transition is HARD and I MISS MY BABIES.


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