Tug of War

There’s a war going on. And no, I’m not talking about the middle east. I’m talking about the war inside me. The war between my head and my heart.

You see, my dear readers, after 10 months of unemployment I was finally offered a job. A job that I had prayed for and I job that I happily accepted. I’m happy the search is over and honestly, I couldn’t believe it was that easy. I was gearing up for the fight to find a job this summer!

When I quit my stressful job in August of 2009 . . . I never imagined that I would be staring at a positive pregnancy test just two days later. It was an utter shock as we were not trying to conceive and I was on birth control.

Even though I had been very unhappy with my job and dealing with a mysterious physical ailment since June, quitting my job was still unexpected. I had planned to stick it out all along. That is until my boss gave me a guilt trip when I told her I needed to pick up my sick son from daycare. That was the last straw. My son comes before ANY job. End of story.

Obviously, we were not prepared to go from two incomes to one. Needless to say, Naaman and I were quite worried and stressed. But since I was only 6 weeks pregnant I decided to start applying to jobs. I got interviews but no job offers. Not surprising in this terrible recession. In January, I accepted a temporary position at one of my previous employers. And since I was starting to show I stopped applying to jobs and told myself I would start sending resumes out again in May after the baby was born.

At the end of April, I decided to open up my trusty iphone job app {seriously, job hunting has never been so easy} and up popped a job that I thought sounded promising. I looked over the qualifications, the benefits, visited the company’s website to get a better grasp on what they did. It all looked good . . . except for one thing . . . I still hadn’t had the baby yet! What if they call me and I’m still pregnant? What if they offer me the job and want me to begin right away? I know, I know, I was thinking way too far ahead. I sent the job to my email so I could look at it again later.

That night I read the description again and went back and forth about applying before I gave birth but went ahead and sent my resume anyway. That was April 28th.

Fast forward to the day we came home from the hospital with our brand spankin’ new baby and I hear my phone ring. It’s the human resources director and they want to interview me. The kicker? I will be twelve days post-partum the day of the interview! I reluctantly agree and don’t think about it again until the day before the interview.

Then I realize, holy crap, I don’t even know if any of my suits will fit? And my hair! What do I do with my hair? And, oh shit, WAIT! Who will watch the boys while I am at the interview? And what if Brigham needs to nurse while I am gone? PANIC SET IN!

Obviously it all ended up working out fabulously with the exception of the button on my pants popping off and feeling like I couldn’t speak in coherent sentences at the interview. I guess two hours of sleep will do that to ya.

I was very honest and told them I had just had a baby twelve days ago and I couldn’t start right away. Both of their jaws hit the floor and they said there is NO way I could look as good as I do after just having a baby {wow, I like these ladies already!}. Then they said that they would work it out if I was the right candidate. I left feeling like they weren’t going to offer me the job because of the disclosure.

Three days later they offered me the job. They also told me that I could start my first full week at the end of June. I quickly calculated how old Brigham would be . . . 8-weeks-old. Not the perfect scenario. But much better than starting right away! I talked to the human resources director about how I am still nursing and will need to pump. She was so supportive because as it turns out SHE is also a nursing mother of a 10-month-old! YAY for coworkers who understand and can relate to motherhood {this was sorely lacking at my previous job}.

And this is where the previously mentioned war comes in. I am both excited and conflicted at beginning this new job. I feel so lucky that I have landed a job that met all my requirements . . . great salary and benefits, for-profit company {instead of non-profit}, absolutely no fund-raising as a job duty and no nights and/or weekends! My head is saying, this is the best thing that could have happened to you and your family, Molly! Celebrate your accomplishment!

Now if only someone could tell that to my heart. My heart hurts. It hurts with the thought of leaving both of my sons. For ten months I have been able to be a stay-at-home mama to my wonderful little man, Landon. I’ve relished every second of it. But I’ve only been able to spend eight short weeks with my gorgeous new baby boy, Brigham. I am thankful that the job provided me with an additional month of leave. But call me selfish. I want more. I want another month, another two months, another year, pretty please? And then again I don’t.

Hence the aptly named post title, Tug of War. That’s the best way to describe it. My head says this is the right thing. My heart says it isn’t. My head tells me that I want to work. My heart says I don’t want to do anything accept be with my boys. Have crazy talks with Landon in his special toddler language. Hear him say mama for the umpteenth time. Feel the back of his sweaty head after he wakes up from his morning nap. Nurse Brigham all day long and hear him belch as loud as an adult {it makes me laugh}. Change his diapers and sing to him. I want to be there . . . for all of it. The good and the bad. I don’t want to feel like I’m missing out.

I have been down this road before. I had to go back to work after 12 sweet weeks of maternity leave with Landon. Going back to work was one of the most difficult things I have ever had to do. But it did get better {before it got worse at my last new job}. I need to realize that this new job won’t be perfect either. Some days I will wake up and want to stay in my jammies and cuddle up with my boys. Some days I will be excited to get to work and chat with coworkers and finish new projects. Working keeps me productive. It keeps me accountable. It’s just something I feel I need right now. And oh yeah, the paycheck is not too bad either.

Naaman and I have goals we want to reach. We want to travel with our boys. Show them the world and how amazing it is. We want a more comfortable house for our family to grow. A house that actually fits the four of us and our stuff! We want to help our boys pay for college. We want to retire comfortably someday. These goals will only happen with two incomes.

And let me tell you after ten months of saying no to extras I am super excited to get our lives back on track! To pick up where we left off this time last year. Of course, it helps that we know how to live on one income now. We know how to save and we learned the difference between desire and necessity. A lesson that many people are learning in the current economy! I know we’re not alone!

So the tug of war between my head and my heart continues. And I’m sure, as long as I’m a working mom, it always will. I love my boys more than a blog post could ever describe. I love them . . . and I’ll always make sure they feel that love no matter where I am.

Comments

  1. Alysha says

    what a hard ordeal. I cant even imagine. I am praying for you during this time and I know you will choose what is right for your family. It sounds like a fabulous place to work with how supportive they sound but as well, leaving your babies is hard. Good luck molly!

  2. Leslie G says

    I'll be going through this VERY soon. I've been working VERY part time (like 10 hours a month!) and I'd really like to get back to working on a more full time basis. I've been blessed to stay home with my boy as much as I have and I dread the day that I have to drop him off in someone else's care. Good luck to you- it won't be easy, that's for sure.

  3. Mrs. M says

    Congrats! It will be hard, but so much better for you and your boys in the long run. You will always want to be home with them, and that's okay :o)

  4. Leah says

    Oh hunny, I'm just catching up. I can just imagine your anguish. Sometimes your head just has to win, which never eases the blog to the heart!

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