One of the things I have struggled with as a working mom outside of the home is loving my job…let alone my life. I have resented moms that could work-part time, quit their jobs, or stay home even prior to beginning a pregnancy. I enjoyed working as a young professional so I don’t think I would want to have stayed home from the beginning of marriage. However, the thought of being able to stay home while pregnant sounds very nice.
Job expectations change. Working environment changes. Priorities change. Being a work mom is just hard. Sometimes it is so hard to even appreciate having a job despite the state of our economy. We start to envy others that have something different, something/anything that we don’t have…regardless of whether it could possibly not be all it appears to be. We assume that if one thing, maybe two things at the most, were different than everything would fall in line. If we were reimbursed slightly higher, it would be worth it. If we had a flex option to work from home, it would totally be worth it. If we had more help out at home, we could cope better.
While any of those things might temporarily make our perspective better, we tend to find ourselves right back where we started…not loving our job…and eventually not loving our life. It can be all-consuming, all-encompassing. Instead of focusing on things we do love, we see all of the little things that bug us. A dirty house, an unsympathetic coworker, 22 errands to run on the weekend…and we resent.
I can’t say that I am always in this magical place where I love my job and love my life, but I have realized that my life is so much bigger than just my job. It’s bigger than my family and my work/family balance. My life is everything that I wish was different, everything that simply is, and everything that it can be. My life is the “big picture” as well as all of the little details but too often I focus on just a couple of those details. I can use my life to inspire and nurture and achieve or I can focus on everything that I wish was different.
This has been a huge lesson for me. I re-learn it daily sometimes…or at least weekly, ha ha. In this moment in time I can truly say I love my life. I love that my house is warm and lived in. I love that I avoid as much processed food as I can without stressing about it. I love that I have two so healthy children compared to many. I love that I have an extremely down-to-earth husband that is entirely capable of parenting alone when I work a weekend. I love that I have a meaningful job and that my days usually go very quickly.
I will probably have to remind myself of half of these things in the morning…or at least part way through the week. I am trying so hard not to resent or be envious because what others have is not always what I really need or want if I am being honest. They may have one or two things that would be really cool to add to my life but they may also have three or four things that would make my life harder. They may also envy me for reasons unknown to me. Instead of being part of a vicious circle I am trying to set myself apart as someone who lives my own life to the fullest. At the end of the day, it allows me to safely and truly say that I am not just loving my job or my meal plan but I am loving life.