Thursday, November 16, 2006

My day off

My work week is already over and it’s only Thursday. I am volunteering at Ella’s school tomorrow. They need someone to take pictures of their new building, and I’ll be helping with the Thanksgiving feast that Ella’s class is serving. There will be Pilgrim hats and lots of songs about turkeys.

After the feast and program, Ella will go down for her “quiet time” and I’ll run over to pick up Harrison - Fridays are short days for him. We will also pick up a new friend of his. Harry’s having a play date and he’s really excited. While the boys are playing, I’ll do laundry, gather recipes for Thanksgiving, and try to organize the huge pile of school papers and mail on my desk. I even found a few Thanksgiving-themed word searches for the boys to do if they need some structure to their afternoon.

Tomorrow has quickly become exactly the kind of day that I hoped to have when I quit my full time job. I have mixed emotions, though. I felt it when I was arranging the playdate tonight. The mother works full time and as I was talking to her I found myself explaining my work schedule. “I have always worked full time….I just started part time….there’s nothing wrong with parents that work.” I just kept talking and talking. After I got the kids to bed, I watched the end of Grey’s Anatomy. One of the show’s themes was about working moms and the internal struggle.

I’m happy with my new schedule. I love that I get to be a much bigger part of my kids’ lives, but I have this guilt – as if I’m letting Gloria Steinem down.


Dave said...

Gloria Steinem never had kids. You're doing great.

Anonymous said...

I think the key to keep from backsliding on the feminist movement is the choice factor. You had a choice with what to do and you made the choice that you felt was best for your family. There is nothing wrong with that, women like you should be lifted to a higher plateau then women who make the choice based purely on what other women will think that their choice meant.

Wow that last sentence hurt my head. Don't worry about what other mothers are thinking, for all you know that mom was thinking, "man I wish that I could be home with my kid on Friday".

Skylar said...

Take a look at what you are doing to your kids, Ella will know that she has a choice and that whatever choice she makes in life her mother will support her. Harrison knows that it is okay for a woman to have a choice and that whatever he and his wife choose, his mother will support it. You are setting an amazing example for your children, plus I bet that in a few weeks (once the newness wears off) you will be more relaxed and fun to be with. Choices and fun, what more could two kids ask for?

Anonymous said...

Don't you dare feel guilty!! You're doing something that a lot of Moms just wish that they could do. Sure, there's less money coming in, but it's amazing how people manage to live on whatever they're making.

Kath said...

No need to feel guilty.

You made a choice that was right for you and your family so stick with it and don't look back.

One of my friends who never ever wanted kids changed her mind when her birth control failed and she wound up pregnant.

She left a 6 figure job to be a SAHM. Personally, I thought she was nuts and I told her so. But it's what she felt was best for her and her family, and now they have drastically downsized their lives so she can raise their daughter.

She's not looking back and neither should you.

Psycho Kitty said...

I think the whole point of the feminist movement was/is/*should* be that we're able to make our own choices, instead of being forced into a decision whether it's what we want or not.

I think what you're doing is completely in line with that. You get to make the choices that are best for you and those you love--not because you are expected to one thing or the other, but because this is what makes you happy. There is nothing wrong with that, and everything right.

Anonymous said...

You haven't let Gloria down! Feminists don't demand that women work outside the home. What is relevant, and why we keep up the fight, is the lack of affordable child care and other such hindrances that prevent it from being easier for moms to work outside the home if they want to. Is there really a choice when you don't have accessible child care or when you're socially condemned for wanting a career? (I saw Grey's too - the stereotypical treatment of the mother/lawyer made me furious.) We should be encouraging and supportive of women who want to both work and have a family, and it sounds like you are. And if you can make it on half your old salary, why wouldn't you stay home? Of course that's going to be more appealing than heading to the office... and I think Gloria understands this. :)

Anonymous said...

I was driving my son to preschool today and I noticed a woman and a little girl walking down the street. The woman had a pink coffee cup in her hand and the little girl was walking up some stairs and doing little kid things. I thought to myself: "I wish I could take a walk with a cup of coffee. Wouldn't that be nice..." Then, I did a double-take and realized that I recognized these people. It was you and Ella! Ella looked like she was enjoying herself. It must be nice to walk Harrison to school in the morning and have some one-on-one time with Ella. I was jealous. You are very fortunate!