Recently, while at work, I received some bad news; a friend of the family had passed away. She left behind 4 children.
I was beside myself with grief. I grieved for her family, for her husband who no longer had a partner, for their young children who would grow up without a mother, and for the parents who outlived their child.
I couldn’t help but look at the parallels in our lives, and think “what if that were me?” I started picking apart my life and my priorities. I needed to spend more time with my children, to hug them more, to appreciate my time with them. I needed to be there for my family.
When I got home from work that night, I hugged my children… tight, and I cried. Then I explained to them why I was crying. Partly because I didn’t want to confuse them and partly because my daughter was in their son’s class. I needed to explain to her that her friend no longer had a mommy. That’s not an easy thing to do.
Once the kids were in bed, I sat and cried some more… to my husband. I have said before that I needed to find a job that would allow me to be home more, this put all of that into perspective.
When I had settled down, I went and got the laptop, as I usually would. I popped onto Facebook and Twitter (my usual haunts), and then checked my email. I sat staring at my screen. This was it, the answer to my prayers.
What could I possibly find in my email that could change my life? An email asking if I was interested in discussing employment with a mom-based marketing company. I cried… some more, and said yes.
Now, I have held the same position for 14 years, I had seniority, I had security, and I made a good salary. I didn’t think there was going to be anyway to justify leaving all of that.
I went for the interview, and I walked in knowing that I wanted to work for them. I just needed something to push me to leap. So we talked. The more we talked, the more I wanted it. It was a pay cut, but I still wanted it. I left saying I would have to get back to them because I needed to discuss it with my husband.
As soon as I left the building, I called. No answer. I called again. No answer. I was sitting in my car moments later when my phone rang. It was him.
I told him the details. I could work from home most of the time, I could be home for dinner (not something that happened with my other job), I could coach soccer, I could be there… for my family. This is what he said to me: “We have to make this work” and, together, we decided I should jump.
So, I handed in my letter of resignation. It felt REALLY good.
My boss was really happy for me and totally understood why I wanted to make the change.
This is going to be a life changer! Did I mention I’m going to coach my daughter’s soccer team? I’m going to cook dinner for my family every night (that might get old quick, but right now it’s so cool!). I will see my kids WAY more, I will see my husband WAY more (he might regret this decision) and I will know that I made the right decision for my family.
It feels REALLY GOOD.
After reading my posts on black history and lending me some books that never got read, my friend Kelly invited Rebecca and I over to further discuss black history. When help is offered, I generally take it.
So, Rebecca and I (and my 1.5 year old) headed to Kelly’s to talk slavery, underground railroad, equality, and all things black history. Kelly had some print-outs for us, and was ready to get down to business. Only problem is, kids generally don’t want to get down to business.
So, Kelly and I sat with Rebecca and discussed a few topics. We talked about slavery and how white people owned black people. We talked a little bit about Martin Luther King, and we talked about how people are all the same on the inside.
I know Rebecca took some of it in, I know she heard us, and I think this conversation was a great idea (thanks, Kelly). I also think, Rebecca was distracted by her sister and Kelly’s son. I think she was more interested in talking about her new Geronimo Stilton book, and I think she wondered why we were having this discussion at all.
After a short while, we gave into her distraction and let her go and play. We hung out, the kids played, and we didn’t cover as much ground as I think we thought we were going to. I’m okay with that.
There is plenty of time for Rebecca to learn about black history, and it doesn’t have to happen in February. Kelly and I are talking about a trip to the Buxton National Historical Site where we can “follow the underground railroad from slavery to freedom.” Maybe Rebecca will find this more interesting.
That’s what I am, a working mom. I would love to “just” be a mom, but there are bills that need to be paid, sports that need to be played, and shoes that need to be… okay, want to be bought.
I am fortunate in that my 2 year old is at my mother-in-law's house while my husband and I are at work. I don’t pay for daycare. I was not so fortunate with my older daughter. We paid about $200 a week for her to attend daycare.
I know, that’s peanuts compared to a larger city. When she was really little, and I was living in Toronto, I paid $50 a day!
I had always wished they would institute full-day kindergarten, and they did; the year she started grade one.
Now, I am hearing rumbles that full-day kindergarten is on the chopping block so the government can save some coin. I get it, it’s expensive, hundreds of millions of dollars. BUT until the government stops other ridiculous expenditures, perhaps full-day kindergarten should stay. Perhaps giving parents a break is a good idea. Maybe now that they see how expensive it is, they will take another look at their $100/month Universal Child Care benefit…And, knowing them, axe that too.
If they are really looking to cut back that deficit, how about not paying $90,000 A DAY to figure out how to cut back the deficit? How about not spending more on ice shacks for the Rideau canal than most people pay for their house?
I’m tired of the government taking away important funding and then not being taken to task for their frivolity elsewhere.
I work hard, I have debt too. So, you know what happens when there is no money for shoes? I don’t buy shoes. Do you think the government would pay me $90,000 a day to give them some advice?