I had a girls' night out on Saturday night. No children, no husbands, lots of cheesecake. It was heavenly. Usually after a night like that, I would come home with a million funny stories. While there was no shortage of laughs, this time I left thinking about something more serious than usual.
My friend Amie asked me if I liked working full time or being a mom better. What a question!!! My first real job was at an organization called PEN Products where I not only enjoyed my job, but my coworkers were my best friends. A lot of them still are. So, my first thought was that I missed that camaraderie. I stay home and most of my conversations take place with a 2 year old. I love those conversations, but sometimes it would be nice to talk about something other than diggers and Dora. Truly though, more than missing adult interaction, I miss feeling important. I miss walking into a room and knowing that I had a specific goal to accomplish and getting it done, and laundry just doesn't measure up. (Plus, that never seems to get done). I miss walking into our manufacturing sites and having the people there fear me just a little bit because I was HR and perceived as a person of power. Little did they know I didn't have much, but I ate it up anyway. Its pretty much a given that the children have the power here, so there isn't even an illusion for me to cling to. And as ridiculous as this sounds, I miss the feeling you get putting on business attire and heels and feeling like you could conquer the world. Its just not the same feeling sitting here in my pajama pants and t shirt.
But, what would I miss if I went back to work? I could dust off my favorite Liz mules with the kitten heels that said sophisticated but sassy professional, but when would I get to dust off the play dough and watch Will squish it into a ball and say "Look, Mommy, horse!" You'd never guess it was supposed to be a horse, but he gets so excited when he thinks he's made an equestrian masterpiece. And what would I miss of Jack? I have so many memories of Will getting older and the firsts that I got to witness because I was always here. We learned so much together and I wouldn't trade that for the world. And I can't wait to watch Jack figure it all out too.
So, maybe the answer is that it isn't one or the other. Its not a this or that situation. I wouldn't miss the late hours at the office because someone else's poor planning became my crisis, and I probably wouldn't miss the eardrum shattering tantrums that little Will has mastered these past few months. But as Will sits here smearing his breakfast on his head, as he does most mornings, I can honestly say that this is where I want to be now. Tomorrow... who knows.