As a child, I grew up in a family surrounded by a mindset of hard work pays off, an idea that with persistent dedication, hard work and motivation, success and accomplishments would soon follow. I started working at the age of 15. Now mind you, I grew up with 3 brothers and being the only “girl” in the family, I had more testosterone than estrogen, which kind of worked in my favor and surely used to my advantage in certain circumstances. But what I gained out of those relationships with my brothers would come into play later in life.
Being taught and surrounded by men most of my life, I became more aggressive and assertive in the career field. I knew that with that mindset that was so deeply embedded in my brain that if I wanted something, I would have to work harder, longer hours and practically, dedicate my entire self to successfully achieve my goals. Approximately, 7 1/2 years ago, I started a career that I knew would take me to where I ultimately wanted to be. Even with prior experience, I took a demotion and from the bottom worked myself up the career ladder. I used what I knew best to climb from one step to the next, knowing that with each step, It was paying off. Was it easy? By no means! It was exhausting, stressful, and extremely physically demanding; the idea of walking out to your car and you being the only one left in the building or parking lots spoke volumes to me. But it didn’t stop me! I kept going.
After 5 years of dedicated work, I finally achieved my goal. I was in charge of a multi-specialty medical office and loved every moment of it. As I said before, it still wasn’t easy, it was quite the opposite. However, something about the pressure to succeed made me even more motivated to work harder, to please as many people as I could, to show others that there are people out there that truly care! It came to a point where I started to realize that all the hard work that I had done for 7 1/2 years was so heart driven, I often placed 95% of my hard work and dedication on my career and not on my family!
The moment of realization weighed heavy on me for a couple months. I am a very detailed organized person and always working with the intent to satisfy other’s, however, as the months passed by the heaviness grew more and more with each passing day. The thoughts of the people whom I grew to think of as my family for 7 1/2 years crossed my mind numerous time throughout the day. How much I would miss them if I left, or how much I would miss the people who I got to see every 3,6 or 12 months that I became attached to. Those emotions played a huge role in my decision and what probably kept me there longer than expected.
When so much heaviness is weighing on one’s shoulders, it hard to ignore, which finally brought me to the decision that would change my life forever. Thankfully, I have an incredible husband who has worked and continues to work so hard to allow me to do what I have always dreamed. That is to be a stay at home mom. His support was the final factor in this decision. I probably won’t ever forget my last day of work because it was as if I was leaving my 2nd family behind. Relationships that will stay with me forever. It was by far the hardest thing I have ever done because I was taking what I knew best and stepping into a world of the unknown. It just sounds frightening!
It has been 2 months since I left the career world and started this journey as a stay at home mommy, I often (sometimes too much) question if I did the right thing. No one ever said being a stay at home mommy would be easy, because I know I have said this before, It’s NOT! But, what I fight too often inside emotionally, is with the fact, that I don’t get to see the people whom I’ve spent the last 7 1/2 years with on a daily basis, because too many times, they cross my mind numerous amounts of times a day!
Is it bad that after 2 months, I still think about my fellow co-workers constantly? Even the one’s whom I never would of even thought about before. I often ponder the thought, If they themselves are managing well, if they are doing okay? It is odd and strange to admit that even after this long period of time, I still have my whole office sitting in a box in the back of my car trunk, as if I am just on a leave of absence, or mini vacation? To this day, I can’t help but to wonder if all the work that I used to do is being completed in a timely, efficient and effective manner, or is it piling up day after day? It is so bad that first thing in the morning, my brain is preparing for a phone call from someone who is about to call out before I am even awake and yet I left that all behind more than 60 days ago. For whatever reason, it’s as though, my mind and heart have not detached from the old way of life.
I struggle with the fact that because I have worked since I was 15 years old and that’s what I know best, I question if I’m even doing this whole new stay at home mommy thing right! When those thoughts start to cross my mind, it brings me back emotionally to the all the questions above. But why? Is it because it became so familiar to me? Or is it because, in my heart, I know those 7 1/2 years, I put endless amounts of time, dedication and practically my sweat and tears into every moment of every day.
There was passion behind what I was doing and accomplishing. It brought me happiness in a way that could be seen by a smile on someone’s face or even a simple appreciation voiced by a “Thank You”. In those moments, all the sacrifices I made on a daily basis, made sense. That was the motivation behind the driving force and most likely, is still the cause of the inability to detached myself from what I loved to do. This is what I would call a heart and mind issue, and it doesn’t change in my new career field either, as a stay at home mommy, it is probably even more intense now than ever.
I know I can’t be the only one who fights internally with these emotions because I think that is the basis of being a mother in general, career working or stay at home mom, it is clearly the thought process of a woman. We are always second guessing ourselves and for the life of me, I can’t seem to figure out why. My husband tells me all the time how great of a job I am doing, while I am expressing to him, the total opposite. Isn’t that simply profound. You can be told your doing the greatest job but if you, yourself, don’t feel it then something is off, whether that is a heart issue or a mind issue, there has to be some kind of adjustment.
I think that while I struggle with these inner emotions, deep inside I know I have made the right decision, which was primarily focused and intended for the sake of my families best interest, it might take a couple more months to get physically and emotionally settled with this life changing decision. Just because being a stay at home mommy might seem quite easy and less stressful, it is not, it is actually more work and much more demanding.
When I started this off, I mentioned I grew up with the mindset of hard work pays off. I firmly believe, this applies to any situation. So, on that note, I am going to take the knowledge that has been embedded into my mind since I was a child and gracefully use it to the fullest of my abilities as my job is no longer in the career world but now 100% focused on my family. Because no one ever said this was going to be easy!