In my two years being a mother I have never had to juggle my priorities until recently. Over the summer I took on a little part-time job, mostly working from home. I really enjoy the work and it helps that my boss is also my aunt and it means that I get to see her and catch up once a week. As the work I was doing began to pay off, I have been given more responsibilities. Somewhere in there I also decided to go back to school. Full time.
To say I am overwhelmed would be an understatement. I like having something to do every day, and I love being able to use my intellectual side again. But it seems the trade-off is less time with my daughter. I knew going in that for two full days a week I would not be with her. I enrolled her in the campus daycare while I am in class. What I didn’t realize was that on the days where we are still home together I would have a mountain of homework, plus all the responsibilities of my job and keeping up with housework and groceries and paying bills. It’s become chaotic.
Add to that the fact that Leah is having a difficult time adjusting to the new schedule, her sudden interest in the potty, and the continuing Nuk Battles and that is my life right now. I thought I was doing the right thing. I picked a career that interested me and that I might be good at it and owned up to the fact that if I ever want a house and more kids I am going to have to have a career. Now that school has begun I am not so sure it is right. The trade-off is a toddler who seems confused and hurt by my leaving her. It is so confusing and overwhelming.
As a parent, there are going to be times when you have to “do the right thing”. But what is the right thing? How do we define that? And who are we to say that what was right for one parent or child is right for us as well? I want to give my daughter a home to grow up in and brothers and sisters to play with. But what if she grows up and says she would have rather given all that up just to have me home with her?
I guess for now the only thing I can do is keep plugging along and see how things go. As a mother I have always made decisions by asking my own parents for advice and/or winging it. This one I am going to have to figure out as I go along. All I know is that I love Leah for than anything and no matter what I do, she will always be my first priority. Sometimes as a parent that is the best you can do.