I had a car appointment for an oil change and headlight replacement today and decided not to bring my laptop. I disconnected and scooped up my daughter for a little adventure with a bag full of lunch, books, and her sock monkey. Off we went, driving through the drizzle and gray.
After I checked in at the desk and made myself a hot cup of complimentary coffee, my daughter went over to the children’s corner to play with the train set and dump trucks. Her ability to play quietly by herself was a gift today. I finally had a little mental space to think. As an introvert, thinking is what I like to do. It’s “me” time. It’s heaven.
A while back I wrote about surviving company layoffs. In the last year or so, my job has really gotten to me. There is nothing bad about it. I have an 8-4 schedule, decent wages, benefits, retirement plan, short commute, and a very flexible work schedule but I am NOT passionate about it. Good at my job, yes. Passionate about it, not one bit.
I have TRIED to be excited. I have attended conferences and taken on new projects. I am realizing that new IDEAS excite me while the actual job does not. I have known this for years, but it didn’t rub me the wrong way until after I had a child.
The first year working mostly from home with a new baby was actual heaven! The second year I chose to go into the office 2 days a week and work the other 3 days remotely. I started to notice that other women my age (or younger), some with children, most not having children yet (or ever), started to climb the “ladder”. Something in my stomach said “hmmmmm…” and I began to ‘compare’ myself, feel less accomplished, left behind. So I joined the LeanIn group and started thinking about my “career”.
Back in July, I applied to participate in the Leadership program which in past years had become synonymous with “promotion”. I also opted to do another year in the LeanIn circle. Many months have passed and the company has been through a major reorganization. With my job in tact and more work piled on, I have recently learned that I have been accepted to that Leadership program…and here is where my thinking took off.
What if it’s ok that I don’t work more? What if my current position is enough? What if my salary is enough? What if I don’t want to work more for a slim chance at a promotion? What if I don’t want to give up job flexibility and remote work to make more money and have a better title?
Does this mean I am not successful? Does this mean I am not enough? Does this mean my husband’s ex-wife is better than me, more accomplished etc..because she makes more money than me? I know…but cut me some slack, there are a host of irrational thoughts that come with being the second wife.
What if it’s okay to just go to work everyday, do what I need to do and then come home and enjoy blogging, hiking, mothering, wifing? And the bigger question still…why do I feel like I need to BE more? Notice I didn’t say I want to be more.
All kind and considerate thoughts are welcome in the comments section below.