January 31st, 2008
Yes, I know it’s been a while. I’ve been busy, most recently with the decision to get a job.
I had an interview for a position that is interesting, thought-provoking and inspiring. The only downsides are that the pay is minimal (base pay is anyhow) and that it would require kicking Pudding out of the house and into daycare. Since the base pay is so small it won’t allow for someone to come in and watch him.
Either way, the Pudding issue is the one that is causing me sleepless nights and irritated stomach lining. I love this job offer but I am really not thrilled with the idea of leaving him in someone else’s care just yet. I know that other mothers have done it and the kids have been fine. And that’s great for them. Me, I’m freaking out.
When I got pregnant with Punksin, TG and I discussed it and decided that we wanted one of us to be the primary caregiver for our child. The horror stories, the financial outlay, the idea of seeing our daughter mainly on evenings and weekends, none of it was attractive to us. Far from being liberating, the whole idea of turning my 3-month old over to someone else for what would be the majority of her waking hours made me physically ill. And it’s doing the same now.
However, the conflicted feeling is worse now too. With Punksin, I was just leaving a horrid boss and the idea of being home was fresh and I actually relished the rest and rejuvenation it would bring. Now, I’ve already been home for 4 years and while I’m not itching to be out of the house, I’m itching for my own income and a life that consists of more than being a chauffeur for my children. But with that, the guilt comes in because I think that if I was home with Punksin, how can I give Pudding any less? Why should I subject him to outside care when I didn’t do it with Punksin?
He hasn’t made my choice any easier. The night before I interviewed for the position he started making “mamamamamama” sounds. Not necessarily directed at me, my mind knows, but the heart insists on being tugged. And when I went for the interview, the noise he kept at my girlfriend’s house can only be described Biblically as “much wailing and gnashing of teeth.” I could hear him as I approached the door. It was horrible. (Which reminds me, I really owe her something…)
I had so little clue, when I first got pregnant, that being a hands-on mother and an educated professional woman with ambition would have to be so goddamn mutually exclusive.