Tuesday, May 31, 2005

Hard Place

As we continue with the factors holding me back from my blogging responsibilities:

D's job. I know I have touched on this before, but due to a much needed soapbox moment, I never devulged details which is difficult to do as D is afraid someone from his job will somehow stumble onto this (non-public) site and know that he's not happy. Hmmm....you think they might figure that out when you give your 2 weeks? Anyway, as I was saying, because of D's fears, he has asked that I never refer to his place of employment on my site which makes Part II sort of a difficult task considering it is the main contributing factor in our dilemma at the time. In a nutshell: 3 crappy raises in 3 years, no promotion or hopes for a better raise has put us in a situation where we can not afford to live in New York with his current salary once the wee one arrives. Let me rephrase that a bit: With the crappy salary the place of employment has given D, we can not afford to live in New York and have a wee one with just one salary. Come December, when the wee one arrives, if all is to stay the same, I will be frantically searching for daycare.

Now, let me pause to give my daycare disclaimer:

I don't think that everyone is good to there children by being a stay at home mom. I also believe that many women are better mom's because they do work outside of the home. I know people who nobly hold the stay at home mom title only to verbally and emotionally tear down their kids all the while. My best guess is they are staying home because someone told them any other choice would be a disgrace to their children. They might find themselves enjoying motherhood and their children more if they did work. On the flip side of that, I do not believe that a woman can have the best of both worlds: enjoy being a career mom and still be the mom they dreamed of being. It is impossible to give 100% of yourself to 2 separate humongous commitments, one has to suffer. There are many woman out there who do this balance beautifully, who do put their kids first above the career and put their jobs second. But, just as I know woman who would be better working, I also see woman who value the status of their careers over their kids. Personally, I think these kids will still be excellent members of society, it's those parents who will look back at their lives and realize how much they missed out on and see the distance that stands between them and their grown child. When it all boils down, this is a very personal decision that you and your spouse have to make. This decision must be something that makes the two of you comfortable, not what makes your Aunt Gertrude comfortable.

Aunt Gertrude aside, I have always had every intention of staying at home with my child. I have not made this decision due do some strong nobel value, granted I was raised to believe this was best for the child, but not the main reason. I personally want my child, at this young age, to be with me so I can determine their schedule and daily activities. I don't want to miss the little things in my child's life and I want to be the one to have the bulk of my child's time. I want to be the one to sit and teach my child to do certain developmental things. I want to be the one to work on their fine motor skills. Come a certain age, I will have to put my child into the world and have outside role models influence my child. I only have so many years to be the #1 person in his/her life and I want to make sure that in those years I give my child the tools I want them to have to function. I know I can hold on a little longer by homeschooling. My sister homeschools and does a magnificent job, but I know my limits, I am not a teacher and plan to rely on skilled professionals to do this job for me. Bottom line is, I don't want to have to be in a situation where I don't have a choice and daycare would be our only option.

The mental turmoil then comes into play. At this point, the only real way out would be to move outside of New York where there are more jobs in D's field and a state where the cost of living is lower. I was ready to move from New York the first day I got here 2 1/2 years ago with no hesitation and no sad goodbyes. But now that it might be a reality, I feel strangely torn. Where this area is infested with fleece and birckenstock loving people, I am a suede and Franco Sarto kind of girl. Having my mom here this weekend I quickly remembered why I desired to be closer to home. I am sure it's the pregnancy hormones, but when mom left on Sunday I came home and did something I didn't think was biologically possible for me as I was born minus tear ducts. I laid on the couch and cried. Not my typically pushing out of a half tear, but streams of them, to my shock and dismay. I became even more emotional when I walked out onto the deck which was decorated with the flowers mom had bought for me while she was here. Just standing outside the door tore me up, and through a choked up voice I expressed my deep desire to be closer to family. But now, with my pregnancy hormones shifting from induced crying to insane frustration, I would feel very sad to leave the dear friends that I have made here. I can't even imagine how I would have made it to this 12 week mark (Friday) without their encouragement and love. How on earth do I leave them?

Never would I have thought, 2 1/2 years ago that there would be anything holding me back from wanting to leave. But now I am at this strange spot in my life with these expectations that I want to reach and the reality that my physical position is not allowing me to reach them. It's definitely being stuck between a rock and a hard place.

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