My work allows me to take loads and loads of maternity leave. Plenty of maternity leave. 2 months before the birth (sometimes more, if things get complicated) and 6-7 months AFTER the babe's birth.
Like I said, plenty of maternity leave. My company is generous.
So for a few months after my babies were born, I was a SAHM. I didn't go to work. I took care of my kids and my family and my household.
And I found that when being a SAHM, my world shrunk to the size of my home.
I didn't care about the price of rice in China. In fact, as far as I knew, they no longer had rice and were now eating some genetically mutated rice-type food! Who has time to think about stocks and bonds and presidents and passing laws when I am spending all my time researching why the toddler hasn't pooped in 6 days, prying things out of the infant's mouth (a toy car tire! dog hair! a hairtie!) and perpetually keeping the toddler from sitting on/knocking over/pulling on/crashing into his baby sister.
I didn't read news. I read articles concerning teething and ways to disguise food for a picky eater.
I didn't see it when I was in the midst of it, but now that I am back to work, I realize how small my world had become. As small as a baby.
Most of you know I don't love my job. Even after 7 years, I don't consider being a flight attendant my "career". But I love what my job gives me.
I get free time. I get alone time. I get to get away and see places and things I would never have seen without it. I get to have adult conversations with adults regarding adult things. I get to read a book without a toddler wanting to play twenty questions, shave my legs in complete privacy and eat an entire meal all by myself. And I get paid very well to do it.
That's enough for me right now.
I have all these aspirations to do so much more than I am currently doing, but I just don't have the energy. I feel like in maybe two years, or three or five, my kids won't need so much of me all the time and I will have the time to do some of the things I know I can do with my life. Some of the things I have been talking about literally my entire life.
But for now, this job allows me the ability to feel sometimes like a SAHM who gets to participate in activities and playdates and sports classes and storytimes, while also getting me out into that big, wide world we live in and giving me a little perspective beyond the blinders of my children and family life. I guess that's good enough.