Monday, March 9, 2009

The Whirl of Gaiety

 Back in December when I went back to work, that first week I actually thought, "This working mom gig isn't so bad.  I can juggle it all-- no problem!"  I think that was on day three, which was the first day I didn't break down in tears at some point on the way to or from work.  (I may also have had a wee glass of wine, which is relaxing but apparently makes me overconfident.)  

So. Three months later and I am still juggling just as fast as I can.  Some weeks go better than others.  Sometimes my house is cleaner than others, and some weeks I make it through more of the to-do list than others.  I struggle with feeling a certain amount of performance pressure at work and many days wish I just didn't have to deal with it.  

If I could, I'd stay home full-time with AK in a split second.  I know I'm a good mom, and it's what I truly love to do.  I struggle with the fact that by the end of a long and busy workday, there's just not as much of me-- or the best of me-- left to give my family.  But it truly isn't possible for us right now (and given the state of the economy it might never happen) so I am trying hard to be content right where I am.  You know, that whole "attitude of gratitude."   So I'm:

  • Thankful that AK has a good daycare to go to where she feels comfortable and happy.  
  • Thankful that we have a home, and jobs, when so many have lost theirs.
  • Thankful that I do work that is meaningful and that I have wanted to do since I was little. Although when I was little I thought librarians got to read books all day and that was their whole job.  
  • Thankful that when I've had a tiring or icky day I get to go home to my husband and daughter.  There has not been a bad day that wasn't totally improved by seeing AK grin and giggle when she sees me. 
  • Thankful that Mark shooed me out of the house for a few hours on Saturday for a mom's day out.  I treated myself to a pedicure, since we have had flip-flop weather all weekend, and  did some shopping at one of my favorite stores.  I took advantage of a deal they ran this past week (I donated 2 pairs of pants, which they will donate to Goodwill, and got $15 dollars off of each of 2 new pairs of pants), and a coupon I had and got some new things for spring and summer.  Mark had given me a gift certificate for Christmas so this was a chance to put it to good use.  I had sooooo much fun and came home feeing rejuvenated.  
So. I'm trying.  I know every mom feels stretched and I am one of many who work outside the home but still strive to be an effective and Godly homemaker, wife, mother as well.  

Our calendar continues to be busy.  In addition to a demanding workweek ahead for me, we just had our six-month post placement visit today.  

All went well, although I should remember by now that our homestudy agency always has us write a super-long report answering many questions about our lives, and then we will answer all of those same questions in person for the social worker.  The HS office never forwards our paperwork to her either, so I end up giving her a copy.  I am also never told in advance to have x number of copies of various documents and then spend a lot of the visit pawing through an expanding file looking for the one document that seems to have gone missing, and then find it tucked into one of our document booklets.  Sigh.

It was a good visit overall and I think our SW really enjoyed meeting AK in person after all these years of meeting with us throughout the adoption process.   I certainly talked my head off-- our SW is a truly sweet lady and my tendency to overshare goes into overdrive at these sorts of things.  I also did some extra housekeeping this weekend just in case although at this point we've adopted our child and surely a little extra dust won't change that.  I've been trying to whip our perpetually messy guest bedroom/office/scrapbook room (aka "The Pit of Despair") into shape and get to the bottom of a huge pile of filing so this gave me incentive to actually do this.  

We enjoyed the beautiful weather the past few days-- sunny, temps in the 70's-- and are bracing ourselves for the next little remnant of winter coming our way this weekend.  This weather pattern is exactly like it was in March of 2003 when we got married.  The weekend before the wedding was gorgeous, and then the day of it was 50 degrees and poured rain all day.  All that to say our 6th wedding anniversary is Sunday, six months anniversary of Gotcha Day is on Monday, and my mom, sister, and nieces are coming for an impromptu visit this weekend.  

Oh, and now that we are back on Daylight Savings Time I want to stay up til midnight and suddenly can't seem to get dinner on the table before 6:45, because it's so sunny outside.  

Whew!   I think this post may have ended up being a mini-therapy session.  I feel better now. 


The Gang's Momma said...

sigh. it's such a juggling act, isn't it? stay at home or work full time out of the home - motherhood stretches us to our limits on most days. but you are so right, the hugs and smiles and giggles are better than any benefit or compensation package could be.

Happy Anniversary. Happy 6 months home!

Pam said...

I love your honest post and the sharing of your heart. Although we've not met (and we really need to!) I can tell you're an awesome mommy, wife, and homemaker.

Happy 6 months~ I think we must have the same social worker. :)Our form is sitting on the "pile" waiting to be completed for our 6 month PP, too.


Kristi said...

Reading your post reminds me to be so very thankful that, for now anyway, I am blessed with the gift of staying home with my kiddos full time! I can hardly keep my head above water some days, so I have so much greater respect for moms who also work outside of the home.
Thanks for the reminder of how blessed so many of us are during these uncertain economic times!
And ACK ~ six month post placement ~ where is my form to fill out to request our appointment?

Wife of the Pres. said...

Thanks for sharing. I too was where you are before the birth of our first. We had a $1200/month house payment (over 10 years ago!) and Charlie was making a respectable income working for the Fed. govt. but it was not mathematically enough. Yet God was faithful as we stepped out into a new territory and He gave me a part-time job to do AT HOME. I did it until Jonah was almost 10!!!

If you feel God is calling you strongly to stay home, I can share some tips on how you might make less than you think when you sit down and do the math of all the cost you'l not incur if you stay home. I can't tell you the last time I bought any new clothes!!! LOL!

Glad all went well with your post-placement visit. :)

jlc said...

Oh my gosh!!! Your daughter is too precious!! Couldn't help but notice your blog. I'm a teacher too and my husband plans on teaching once he's out of the service. Again your family is beautiful. :)

Ladybugsmom said...

I can so relate to your comments...when I went back to work back in Sept I had hoped for a more abbreviated schedule but settled on 30 hrs a week...I am so thankful for that but there are weeks I just don't know how it all gets done. Can't wait to meet your bo baby she is lovely. Come on over to ladybughappenings...leave us a shout.
Emily in TN

Tim and Tanya said...

Hey Kimberly! I can soooo relate to your juggling act! Being a teacher is much more than a 40 hr. week. Being in class full of 9 yr. olds all day doesn't leave you with much energy for your family. Yet we make it work somehow. Some weeks are better than others and the weekends feel like they need to be one day longer. Hang in there... summer is coming! However, I'm thinking I'll have to work summer school too. Ugh!
Hope AK is feeling better soon!