Do you ever find yourself consistently flashing back to one particular moment in time?
Ever since having my second child, I find a memory of my 22-year-old self frequently popping into my head. Here’s the scene: it was my senior year of college, I was about to graduate and start an ‘amazing’ corporate job that I had been fortunate to sign the contract for before the school year even began, and Kenny Chesney’s “Woman With You” was blasting in my car as I drove to campus with the windows down on a warm sunny day.
These lyrics were my dream for my life:
“…Been gopherin’, chaufferin’, company chairmen.
Coffee maker, copy repairman.
Anymore there ain’t nothin’ I swear man that I don’t do.
Been juggling, struggling, closing big deals.
Dancing backwards in high heels.
Just when it feels like I can’t make it through.
She said it sure is nice to just be the woman with you
She said the girl I was with the business degree probably wouldn’t recognize me.
I was gonna run the bank.
I was gonna run the map.
Now all I want to run is a bubble bath.
Back then you know I had this plan.
Before all of this reality set in.
Here comes life boy ready or not.
Hey, I wanted it all and that’s what I got…”
Fast forward fourteen years, to now. I find it so interesting that such a song was on repeat in my car so often. I’m positive that the girl I was then probably wouldn’t recognize me now. I was fearless, ambitious and finding myself exhausted from ‘having it all’ was my number one priority. Today, I am still ambitious, but not as fearless (I guess that’s something that changed with kids), and even though I’m exhausted from ‘having it all,’ it’s definitely not my number one goal anymore.
I have two beautiful, funny, caring human beings who call me Mommy. I have a wonderfully supportive husband and I have an apartment in what I view as the most liveable city in the world. Most days I feel challenged, exhausted, stressed and torn between feeling that I am not able to stay in the office as long as I feel I should and worrying that I am not spending enough time with my kids.
I’m positive that my 22-year-old self would have never understood this, but there are often days where I envy those who have chosen a path that allows for more family time. Even though I say, “I have it all,” the reality is that there is always a trade-off. I think that when you enter into motherhood, it’s so incredibly rare to feel consistently satisfied with your work-family-life balance. I spend a lot of mental space debating whether I have found the correct balance for me and my family, or if I would be happier with a different level of corporate responsibility.
I still haven’t reached a conclusion, but for the time being I think that what I have works for us right now, and I try to remind myself that if at any point it’s not working, my life has evolved and my dreams are allowed to evolve, too.
Anonymous is… Sometimes an Über Mom will find that she can write more freely without the constraints of tying her name to an opinion piece on the internet. Where the content is sensitive, we protect the names of our authors.