I’m Hanging Up My Boots
In ten of the shortest work days I will be walking away from a company that I’ve dedicated eleven plus years to. After months, weeks, days and countless hours of soul searching, self reflection and discussions with my husband, I will be making the big move back to Charlotte as a Mother and student. I will be finishing my degree this summer/fall and testing out my stay at home mom skills and I’m completely terrified.
Well, not entirely; I’m excited, nervous, anxious, hopeful, positive and terrified. I’m excited about being able to spend so much time with my daughter at such a fun and critical part of her development. The activities and list of Mommy and daughter shenanigans is growing by the minute. However, I’m nervous and anxious about not living up to her or my own expectations. What if she’s bored with just Mommy all day? We were so fortunate to find a daycare that she has blossomed in. She has made such great connections and bonds with her teachers and classmates. It literally breaks our hearts knowing that she will no longer see her people. I’m also scared of failure. Why am I always so worried about failing? Is that normal? What if I don’t have what it takes to be a mother 24/7? One of the things that I’m most worried or terrified of is not being employed. What will not seeing that paycheck every two weeks do to my self worth? Because that is the thing, it’s all in my head.
Everyone I’ve spoken to about staying home has been so supportive, excited and happy for us all. No one has said anything even remotely negative about it, but it is still in my head. I’m grateful for the strong women who helped raise me, but I feel like they have somehow, unintentionally made me feel like I always needed a career to matter. I feel like it is something I have had drilled into my head my entire life. The importance of being independent, capable, motivated, strong, and self reliant has always been at the forefront of my upbringing. Especially, being a woman. Now, I’m somehow battling my inner demons and emotions about what this will say about me. The thing is, I know several stay at home moms who are incredible, bad ass super human, crafty saints! However, when I think of myself being a stay at home mom all I can see is pure chaos.
Do I have to retire my feminist card? Does this mean I’m unaccomplished? Does this mean that my degree will mean nothing? Trust me, I know I sound idiotic as I’m typing this, its just a really hard concept for me to fathom. Anyone who knows me, knows that I never planned on staying home and here we are. Here I am, about to take the plunge into full-on mom mode.
Then I hear a voice in my head telling me to get the hell over myself. It’s going to be amazing to bond with my daughter, make time to garden, craft and create with her. I’ll be able to truly live my wildest Mom dreams with her this summer. Will we have hard days, yes. Will there be days where I need to have a cocktail in a closet, yes. BUT – I have the summer off with my amazing, sassy, smart, goofy little girl and an entire state full of family, old college friends and warm weather awesomeness. Will I have to get used to sweating on a regular basis, yes. Will I ever look cute in my oxfords and cold weather clothing again, no. However, we can have breakfast out on the patio, go for walks with the dog, visit with all her Aunties, surprise Abuela at work for lunches, discover new parks, find the best farmers markets, and get to know each other on a completely different level. (ALL while sweating profusely and hopefully shedding some weight) Charlotte has changed so much since I left in 2012, and my little stinker and I will be able to discover it all together.
The thing is, I will be working harder now than I have been for the last three years. From the moment I got pregnant my heart hasn’t been in to what I’m doing. You know it, my family knows it, hell my boss even knows it. It is finally time for me to choose and I choose her, every single day. I’m hanging up my boots at the best time in my life and for the right reasons. I can walk away from this company knowing that I succeeded. I pushed past boundaries, made waves, learned a million life lessons about friendship and professionalism, and I met and made the most important person in my life. My beautiful, sweet, loving, gangster rapper wannabe husband; who without this company I would not have ever met. I got everything that I have ever dreamt of and wanted because one day in February, eleven years ago, my temp agency sent me to Forsyth Hall drive. I walked in with no expectations, no experience, and no idea what I was getting myself into. Now, I can confidently say that the friendships that I’ve made, the lessons that I’ve learned and the amount of personal growth I’ve accomplished has been priceless.
So, here’s to me – telling my inner Debbie Downer to shut the hell up and sit the hell down. Here’s to a new adventure in motherhood, tons of family time, seeing my daughter grow up as a Carolina girl, and to never smelling like tires ever again.