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Friday, August 5, 2011

35

35 was hard. It has now been exactly a month and a half and I am just now able to express what it made me feel like in a way that others can understand and hopefully benefit from. I guess that I also owe it to you to tell you that 27 was hard too…I still have no idea why and looking back it seems really silly so let’s focus on 35, shall we?

I have an awesome, awesome life. Those of you who know me personally and even many of you whose only contact with me has been through Kidding Around know that. In case you are just tuning in I quit work (my cushy and very lucrative pharmaceutical/medical device sales career) 2 years ago to stay home with my then 19 month and 3 year old daughters. Now those lovely ladies are 3.5 and 5 years old and we all feel like everyday is a vacation. Don’t get me wrong, I definitely feel overworked and under paid  but I would not have it any other way. I digress.

So, I never wanted kids. Did you know that? I don’t mean to digress again but this is totally relevant. Of course, I am absolutely in love with my girls and would have it no other way but my point is that they were not in my “master plan” of how my life was going to go. You see, I LOVED work! Outside sales in the health care industry (pharmaceutical and medical device) was my thing! I started in the industry at the ripe old age of 21 and never looked back. I was whisked away into the world of corporate American and my ultimate goal was to be queen of it. Seriously, I had my eye on the “C’s” and that was where I was headed. Fast. But then things changed…dramatically…and it all came to a screeching halt.
What happened was that I learned what “love” in the purest and most unconditional sense felt like and I wanted that feeling to be around me always. I have also always been the “stay-at-home” type stereotypically speaking. I have three younger brothers who I always loved to care for when we were little. I would brush their teeth, bathe them, feed them, pack their lunches, etc. and I loved every moment of it. Still do. Only now I have three (honestly, do you think hubbie cares for himself now that wifey stays home??) of my own that need that kind of continuous care and I give it to them with pleasure. Another digression.

Ok so, after I had Inara (my second) I was literally crying every Sunday night. And my babies never even went to day care! My mother (bless her heart) used to come over every morning to care for my girls from the time my first one was born. It wasn’t that I felt guilty for leaving them somewhere that was subpar or that they were unhappy. It was that I wanted to be their mom and was only getting to do that after hours and on the weekends. So I cried and I cried for 19 months all the while getting more and more serious about leaving my six figure, very cushy and for all practical purposes fun job. It started out as just words “I wish I did not have to go to work,” and as all the great thinkers (Deepak Chopra, Wayne Dyer, Eckert Tolle) say those words were said enough and we (my old man and me) talked about it enough that one day it just happened. I turned in my 2-week notice 2 weeks before their school started exactly two years ago now and we have never looked back. The way things have worked out is material for a whole other blog post and then some but the fact is that I left my job. Just like that. A job that I was going to make into a life for myself by climbing so far to the top of the ladder that the bottom was just a memory. Now what?

During my career in sales I was always very competitive and I rarely ever lost. If there was a goal I set my eyes on it and achieved it every time. And I was handsomely rewarded for doing so with money, praise and recognition. Now that I have been staying home for the last two years I have turned this “job” into something similar. I set goals, standards to measure myself by and then I am rewarded with either happy girls, a compliment from an outsider or nothing other than another successful day. But alas, there is no extra bonus to be paid, no trip to be won and there may even be some blame to claim. You know for the forgotten snack or water bottle or for the fact that my Andira does not like soccer since “you let her act like a baby at home so it is no wonder she only cries on the soccer field.” And so how do I make peace with now being 35 and being nowhere that I thought I would be and everywhere that I never considered? I traded my suits for sweats and my money for puke. And while I would not ever trade my life for anything else and I do not want to go back to work. I do sometimes wonder where I am. It seem that yes, I am enjoying my life and I can certainly see the benefits of my staying home for all of us but the clock is still ticking. I am getting older and all of the things I thought I would be doing at this age are none of the things I am doing now. Let alone that I am in my mid-30’s and now there is a new box to check. Sometimes I wonder, “what now?” am I done? So, I am going to raise my two girls while turning old and gray and then at the end of it all there is no “C” awaiting me? Different. From what I planned for I mean. 

So I decided very simply, eff that! I gave myself my own “C” title that day.
Chief Mother in Charge J And now I feel better.

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