I have spent the last two days on travel, for my day job, which means I wasn't able to tuck Mini K and Baby C in last night, or kiss them this morning, or see her off to school. It also means I wasn't able to tackle my outstanding items for PGG, but it means I put on my day job job hat and DID MY JOB...or at least one of them.
I have always traveled for my day job, more before I had kids, but even after I still traveled. There was something different about this trip...Mini K taught me what I consider to be a HUGE lesson.
Before I get to the lesson, I think I need to be honest about why I needed to listen and learn. This summer has been a roller coaster. Pineapple Grove in many ways is my escape. I love finding products that I think will make kids, women and men smile when they unwrap them, I love the thought of someone opening something they secretly wanted but never would purchase for themselves and I love tying anything up with a bow. In so many ways this business is a stress relief, but for the last six months it has felt like a heavy weight that I had to carry.
In these same six months I have seen a lot of posts about how women, mothers tackle their daily juggle. Let me be clear, I am not weighing in to the working mom vs. stay at home mom debate. I personally think everyone has to make their own choice and as women and mothers we owe each other respect. For me, I always knew I would work. I love my job, and love it with an understanding that like me it is not perfect. My day job takes me away from my kids, my spouse and in some ways me, but in the last six months I have felt like PGG is waiting to pounce when I get home to keep me away from them. I made some decisions in early August that I needed boundaries. I needed to remember when to take a timeout and say enough. You (the 3 of you who actually read this!) noticed I took a leave from blogworld. I got organized, I thought about what my family needed, what I needed and I planned. In that timeout I realized that I needed to stop thinking that things could wait until tomorrow, because tomorrow gets overcrowded, that each day needs a plan and that sometimes rules can go out the window.
This leads me to this week. I know this sounds sexist, but I think men can travel for business without the guilt that moms carry with us. In the past, when I travel, Mini K has always said she wished I didn't have to go. Yesterday I packed her lunch, drove her to school and when we pulled up to school I told her to listen and work hard before I walked her into her class. As I was leaving she ran over to me and said "you work hard too Momma so we can have fun when you get back." It hit me, maybe life is really just like school and as adults we just do other things during our recess. Mini K doesn't feel bad when she picks one game over the next at recess, and what can I possibly teach her with my own actions if I feel guilty.
So tonight, our scheduled dinner was thrown out the window, by me, and an unexpected trip to Chick Fil A took its place. A bedtime was pushed back by 15 minutes and we talked about the last two days.
I think everyone can benefit from looking at their own life through the lens of a child, where everything is possible and fresh and filled with excitement. My new schedule may not seem exciting to some: it still involves packing lunches and planning dinners, extreme craziness in the morning rush out the door, but those 3 hours after school, during dinner and the bedtime routine are worth it, they recharge me, and then I can take time away from the tv, for PGG and me. I think I have spent far too much time waiting for others to make my priorities theirs that I stopped making them mine. In reality, the only person to blame is me.
So I will end this post with something Mini K said tonight: her favorite thing to do at school each day is to try something she doesn't know how to do because it is scary exciting. Can you imagine how much we adults could accomplish if that was our goal each day?
Want to try it with me?