I had a great talk with MyFriendJen on the way to pick up the kids from school today, about how we both feel like we are just treading water in our lives with our nose barely able to breathe (her awesome analogy). We both feel like we’re constantly on the run, just frantically trying to keep up with our houses and our kids and our schedules, and there’s no time for just relaxing, let alone work on major projects.
She’d like to give up her part-time job, but as a stay-at-home-mom, I can say that not working does not seem to equate to more free time. Maybe it’s because I am not as well organized as a working mother is forced to be? More likely, it’s because I devote too much time to volunteering and party planning, but these things are necessary to make me feel like I’m still an adult, still a valuable member of society. I’m sure my kitchen would be much cleaner if I gave up all my extra curricular activities but I wouldn’t be as happy, and that’s just as dangerous.
I was thinking the other day that maybe this is why parents put so much stock in their children’s futures. Why they are disappointed if their kid becomes a career waitress, and conversely, so personally proud if their kid becomes a doctor. I think it’s because so many parents gave up their own dreams just to make it through parenthood, and so if their kids turn out well, that means it was all worth it. The sacrifice of yourself was worth it for the person you nurtured.
But that kind of sucks.
I’m not sure how to get ahead of the game. How to get my head above water, how to feel like I’m living life, not just surviving life. Who do I want to be? What do I want to say?
And don’t give me that about motherhood being the most important profession, blah blah. I need more. I’m not ashamed to say it.
I don’t really mean for this to be a negative or complaining kind of post. I am absolutely not unhappy. I love being home with my kids, helping them with homework, taking them on fun outings, feeling the satisfaction of an empty laundry hamper (SO LAME, I know, but it makes me smile). I don’t need to be famous or fabulous or feted all around town.
It’s just a reflective time for me, a time to think about what life is, and what it should be.
I guess this is what they mean by mid-life crisis.