Monday, March 30, 2009

In the Middle

There I was, lying on the floor in my office/playroom, resting my head on a stuffed frog. I was wearing my work clothes - skirt and heels - and the baby was making blow farts on the back of my knees while Natalie was busy bouncing on Rody. I was just thinking, “Why on earth am I here?” It’s not so much the existential crisis as just the musing about the chain of events that lead me to this place where I’m half-doing it all and not quite keeping up with anything. I never imagined when I went back to work part time just over a year ago that I would still be doing that today. I always saw it as a temporary situation, expecting that the day would come when I would be forced to choose a side, so to speak, and commit to being either a full-time employee or a full-time SAHM. Now the economy is what it is and the oil industry is at a crawl. My company is more than happy to have a no-benefits part-timer who does as much work as they can throw at me in as little time as I can manage. My husband’s job is secure, but not so secure that I can be as cavalier as I once was about my need to maintain employment.

So here I am, getting the best of both worlds for an extended run. I always knew that you can’t get the best of both without getting the worst along with it, but somehow it has taken me this long to figure out that I can’t be all things to both worlds. I have this crazy double life where the line between the office and the playroom is so blurry that there are matchbox cars behind my keyboard and sometimes my high heels get thrown in with my daughter’s. As I type this, I am on speakerphone for a meeting, listening to the single barely twenty-somethings at my office discuss the merits of feeding goldfish crackers to their pets while they wait for the boss to show up. In the other ear I am listening to the baby snore as he takes his nap on the Shaggy Bag in the corner. One foot is resting on my portable file cabinet and the other has slipped off into the kids’ ball basket, which lives under my computer desk. Any minute now, the meeting will start and I will pray that everyone stays asleep long enough that I can make it through the meeting.

Is this a dream situation? It feels more like one of those weird dreams where you know you need to do something but you can’t figure out what, and you know that the bad guy is coming to get you but you don’t really know who the bad guy is...and you think maybe you could fix it all by just waking the heck up but you really just want to get a few more minutes of sleep before you face the real world again.


Kristine said...

At least it's not weight control.

But then as I always tell my boss, if the choice is weight control or going home, I guess I'll do weight control.

I don't work from home very often, but my kid never sleeps when I need him to when I do.

Mom's Just Wana Have Fun said...

Well written.

I continually struggle with the need to go back to work, but I continune to be a full time stay at nome mom. I just pray God will keep meeting our needs.

Need any insurance? :)