We get really good at debating what's best for the children, but sometimes what's best for the children is what's best for us.
Armed with the skills I accrued during my 10 years of working in the corporate world as an assistant to various financial executives and all of the parenting books one person could read, I set out to be my ideal of the modern, educated stay-at-home-mom.
There are some high-level executives, business owners and heads of HR out there who just don't get it. They don't get the life cycle of a new mother and they don't get that the way things are going now in the world of maternity leave is costing businesses money and resources.
Blogging has become an outlet for me where I can share the things that I care about and help other moms in the process. I can write about bedtime struggles, behavior issues, or just a fun family outing. I can be Mommy to my boys and MomShar to the world.
TRAINING: Mastered multitasking skills such as food consumption while driving, cooking, cleaning and exercising; achieved basic first-aid proficiency after staff member swallowed a Tinkerbell magnet.
I like to take photos of things that may be a bit out of the ordinary: My kids eating, a random trip to Goodwill, the horrid bed head my middle child wakes up with every morning.
"I work from home" provides no information. "Nothing," while tempting, belies the truth. "I work for my husband," makes me feel like I've set the feminist movement back 60 years and I'm riding shotgun with Betty Draper.
In 67 blocks, that man had picked up the shattered pieces of my awful day and pieced them together in a way that made my life feel manageable again.
When you start life as an at-home parent your infant, silence is inevitable and expected. Sure, there's crying and cooing, but unless you're caring for other kids at the talking age, you have no one to actually converse with when at home.
During this day, I realized how much the Internet is a crutch for my to-do list. My calendar is on my laptop, emails are the language of business, Facebook is central to my social life and Pinterest is my hub for dinner recipes. It felt rewarding to find ways around that dependence.
Here's a glimpse into what it's really like to be home with a newborn. I warn you, it's a long post, but then again, anyone who's ever done this parenting shtick will understand why.
The next time I find myself about to label or judge, I will take a step back and remember this woman's answer. I will remember the kind of world I want my daughter to grow up in and I will play my part in creating that world.
The little squirmy baby that easily fit in our hands is now a bigger, stronger, squirmy baby we need to firmly hold with both arms!
Here is the thing about me (and I bet it is about you as well): In the area of taking care of and loving myself, I am an all-or-nothing kind of girl.
Harrison is now is school, so here I am, once again considering employment. I'm a 35-year-old mom with an 11-year gap on my resume. It doesn't scream "hire me." Shouldn't it, though?
I'm thickheaded sometimes, but I finally get it. It's clear as day. All of the faceless Internet trolls, who have never met my family, are making sense now. They have been trying to speak wisdom into my life for the last two years, and I haven't been willing to listen.