My daily decisions as a working woman included things like: whether or not to cash a $10,000 check, whether or not to release a hold on someone's bank account, whether or not to let someone even open a bank account and how to increase sales, manage risk, and increase customer delight. On a rough day, I would have to sit and listen as someone yelled at me for fees that, most of the time, they had gotten because of their own negligence or ignorance.
Now, my most difficult decision of the day is what type of fruit to put in Molly's oatmeal. And that's pretty great. (Today she had prunes)
I'm really appreciating the fact that I'm getting to do these little things for Molly. I'm getting to be the one who wakes her each morning and tucks her in each night. I'm the first to know when she makes a new sound or face or hand movement (we're working on waving!). A few days after Thanksgiving, she pulled up all by herself and I was there to not only see it, but to take pictures too!
I'm so in tune with her and her needs that I often know what she needs even before she does, which has helped me build confidence in my mothering. And I wasn't one of these women who always knew she wanted to be a mom and "just knew" everything to do when the baby came. No, not me. I had some serious post partum anxiety/depression/fear and it has taken me time (and a little medication and a lot of support from friends and family) to feel confident in myself as a mother. But I am definitely getting there.
Let me note that it is not my intention to make any working mothers who may read this feel envious or bad about working. Being a mother is difficult and different for everyone, and it is best in many situations for mothers to work. I support all women in their journey to figure out what is best for them and their family. I didn't always know that I wanted to be a mom and I certainly never had any intentions of ever being a stay at home mom. And, if I'm being honest, I sort of turned my nose up at the idea of being a "homemaker." But, then I gave birth to a chubby baby who made me see things from a whoooole different perspective. And the path that I thought I had mapped out for myself suddenly changed direction.
It's funny, because as much as a baby changes who you are and who you thought you would be, Molly has almost brought my old self back to life, and helped me bring out the qualities in myself I liked that had become buried by deadlines, reports, and climbing a corporate ladder. Where I had almost become numb, I now am able to feel.