Wednesday, May 18, 2011

Mom Up

As I get ready to start my maternity leave (yes, already!) The Hubs and I have sat down many a night to tackle some of the preparation questions.

Will I go back to work?
Will I go back to work, but at a different job?
Will day care for two kids be affordable on my current salary? How about on a salary from a different job?
Would I go insane not having an outside job and staying home with my kids all day? Or would I be glad to do it?
Should Bjorn continue daycare a few days a week while I am on leave? Does he need to be 'socialized'?

And the questions keep going and going.  Right now we are trying to deal only with the stuff we can control at this time - namely, should Bjorn continue daycare while I am on leave.

The Hubs says yes. Not because of any socialization the kiddo needs. Not because he loves his daycare or he has fun playing with his friends. Because I need the time to grocery shop and relax and read before Peanut gets here. He says I deserve it.

And I completely agree. I do deserve it.

But I'm still not going to do it.

Because sometimes it is just time to Mom Up. 

When Bjorn first came, he threw my whole world for a loop. I had no idea how selfish my life had been before - entire days off reading book after book on a lounge chair by the pool. Breakfast with 'The View', lunch with friends and afternoons window-shopping or getting a pedicure. Yes, I worked full-time. Yes, my house was clean, the laundry done and the fridge stocked, but most of my days were spent doing me things for. . . well. . .me.

Then Bjorn came and I read - a little bit. I window-shopped - some. And I got a pedicure only when The Hubs could watch him for a few hours in between feedings. My whole life became a lot less selfish.

I went back to work, put Bjorn in daycare and sometimes - not often, but yes, probably once every two weeks - Bjorn went just so I could have time by myself. To grocery shop or get my hair done or go to the dentist or just.freakin.sleep. I liked those days to myself.

But its time now to let those days slide away. Its time to Mom Up and Be.A.Mom. Embrace it fully. Throw myself into it. I'm not saying a Mom can't take days for herself; of course she can. In fact, I plan on doing it still after Peanut is here. But since I won't get paid on my maternity leave, I need to be more cautious with the cash flow. Paying for someone to watch Bjorn so I can relax is unnecessary. Instead, I will trade with my other Mommy friends - most of whom don't have family in town, either.

It's time now to grab the Mommy reins with both hands, to give into this new life I have chosen. It's time to realize that the way things were before will never be again, and that is a good thing. It's time to stop thinking about the books I can't read and the dresses I can't shop for, and think instead about the homemade bubbles we can make and the finger painting we can do.

It's time to Mom Up.


Meg said...

i can watch 3 kids at once. sign me up for babysitting!! :)

kderoll said...

I admire you. I wish I had some of your selflessness. I have to admit that one of the reasons why it is hard for me to imagine having children is that I recongnize the way that my life will change. Obviously there are the amazing things to look forward too, which is why I do want to have kids and look at those that do and wish that I could do what they do.

Erinn said...

As a mom who didn't return to work (and some days I really do miss it), I can tell you it's a lot of fun if YOU make it that way...for me personally, I've never been happier, but ask me again when baby #2 arrives! LOL I think our mindset has a lot to do with it, oh and sucking up our pride and asking for help, that's important too AND necessary!

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Anna Elena said...

Love this. We are expecting our first and I have been thinking lately about exactly all the selfish things I do that will soon be gone - and then doing as much of them as possible while I still can!

Mommy This and That said...

Let me be honest up? It really sucks. I have finally gotten to the point where the Boy will be going to "school" twice a week in the fall. I need a break...and baby Girl? She is like a dream child!! Never cries, never fusses!!

Tamara said...

I so love you. Im all choked up reading this. It's so good and brave of you to embrace Mom'ing up. I realized yesterday that I have been focusing too much on what I need to DO (laundry, dishes, laundry...) rather than on who I want to BE (as a woman, as a wife, as a mommy). It's time for me to mom up, too.XOXO