When my husband and I first thought about having kids, we naively assumed things would go according to plan. I'd have the baby during my last year in graduate school, maybe the summer after graduating. I'd be home with the baby while attending classes or during that summer post-graduation, and then I'd head out into the work world with new degree in hand. Only that's not how it worked. It took us considerably longer than we anticipated to get pregnant and by the time we did, I'd decided I wasn't in a hurry to get back to work. Much as I loved my new career path, I wanted to cherish this time with my first baby. But honestly, I still figured I'd go back to work sometime in the baby's first year.
And then life continued to flow somewhat against our plan. Things happened in my husband's family. Big changes. More on that later, but suffice it to say, we're heading to Japan to stay with his family this fall, winter and spring. It seems as though I won't be working in my profession anytime in the near future. Or at least not in any way that I can visualize right now. This means that I'm a stay-at-home-mom right now.
Each and every day I find myself wondering what that means for me and how I can be the best mom I can without sacrificing myself too much either. Because it didn't take long for me to figure out that full-time mothering may not be my strong suit. I may be great at it for 3/4 of the day, but for that other 1/4 all I want to do is have a glass or two of wine, read the blogs I follow, read whatever book(s) I'm currently in the middle of, and generally do things all for me. I constantly struggle to stay present with my daughter rather than resenting her for keeping me from my latest book. After all, I DO adore her, but being with her 24 hours a day is a LOT of time and is more of a challenge than I anticipated and I really miss my work and colleagues. These thoughts mostly just make me feel guilty...
I'll likely re-visit this later but right now, she's napping and I'm going to read!