Friday, February 15, 2008

The Million Dollar Question....or something like that

My understanding of my company's maternity leave rules was a little off. Off by two weeks, apparently. I got the news this morning in a terse and somewhat confusing e-mail. It made me panic. "What? When? How am I supposed to...? I don't want to...." And lots of other unfinished statements like that. A lot of four letter words, too. In several languages. Yeah, I'm a little keyed up these days.

I have to call HR to sort it all out, but it looks like they win and I lose two weeks. I've been sitting here for hours (ok, shuffling around in my pajamas, nursing Dos, playing with the Bug and serving up lunch. still. figuratively "sitting.") trying to figure out: do I really want to go back?

After the tears cleared from my eyes, I spun around in my chair to see the Bug reading a book to her stuffed animals. All sweetness, rainbows and love, love, love. "Isn't this worth it?" I asked myself, falling in love with my daughter all over again. "Isn't this better than working overnights and being tired all the time and all the frustration that goes along with work?"

About 45 minutes later, I was ready to put my head in the oven over Dos' non-stop grunting combined with the Bug's repeated insistance that her baby sister does NOT have thumbs and was NOT trying to suck them, wwaaaaaahhhh! "Yes," I thought. "I definitely DO want to go back to work. Tomorrow."

I've been a little crazy since Dos was born. Ok, a LOT crazy. Some dark and scary thoughts have been creeping in here and there. But one thought that is not so dark, and is sometimes comforting is: "I could do this for a couple of years. I could be a stay-at-home-mom and be completely comfortable with it. I'd make dinner and cookies and sew and take my girls places and it would be a lot of work but....I could do it."

Then someone refuses to eat an apple or spits up on my new jeans and I want cry all over again because being a grown up is hard and being a Mommy is even harder and why didn't I marry for money instead of love? Boo hoo hooo.

Could you do it? No matter what you do. If you work, could you stay at home for a couple of years to take care of your kids if your budget allowed? If you stay at home, could you go to work on a crappy schedule at a job you're not sure you love anymore to help your family afford private school and some much needed extras?

I don't get many comments, but I sure could use some now.

1 comment:

Carrie said...

I did do it for a number of years, but now I'm back working and, I have to admit, by most Monday mornings I'm a little relieved to get to go to work. I will say that when I stayed at home, I shifted into a different gear that really made staying at home okay. Something about doing it full-time makes it okay that every minute isn't full of wonderful times that build happy memories. I sort of relaxed into it, and was content. Also, for part of my time, I worked from home part-time - that was nearly ideal because I got a little break to think about grown-up things, but I still got a lot of time with my kids (and could nurse, and know they were safe, etc.) Can I be a little pushy and say that you sounds like you might have a little postpartum depression going on? Can I urge you to talk to your OB/GYN or primary care doc, and when you do, ask to have your thyroid checked?