Last week I got promoted.
I know what you're thinking. How on earth did this woman get promoted when she has been fighting the change from stay at home mom to working mom? What on earth possessed her to take on more than she could already handle? Is this woman insane?
The short answer is yes. Yes. I'm all kinds of insane. The long answer is something about this working mom life fits. And that is really strange to admit. Because I have been fighting this journey for awhile now. I've been struggling to adapt to being a part time working mom. Struggling to keep up and maintain the life of a stay at home mom and the life of a working mom. Sort of failing at both along the way. For the last two weeks I have been on the fence. Should I surrender entirely to what feels a little right? Or should I just stay and limp along with the struggle?
I surrendered. Last week I accepted the position as Assistant Store Manager. And the entire week prior I pondered, and interviewed, and prayed about it. I was so scared and nervous. Then, as I said the word, Yes, something about that fit. And I freaked out a little.
Tuesday I traveled to the coast for a work meeting with my store manager. For the first time in almost ten years, I had to travel for work. For a real meeting of Mangers and Store Managers. I had to collect receipts for an expense report. I was going to stay in a hotel, and have dinner with adults. For the first time in almost ten years, I was an "executive", in the field I got my degree in. For the first time in years, I was not just some one's mother, I was Megan, Assistant Store Manager. To my surprise, it fit.
Wednesday, at the Holiday Meeting I was recognized for my hard work so far. I was named Sales Lead of the Quarter in my region. It's a pretty big deal, especially for someone who joined the company in January. It was also an amazing feeling, because most days I'm pretty sure I'm doing it wrong. Not just the job but everything. So to win an award, get some recognition, and then to ice the cake with a promotion, you could say I was feeling pretty good.
And that good feeling lasted the entire ride home, even when I walked into the house and kissed my already sleeping babies. I talked to the Hubbs about the meeting and the award and the promotion that we weren't even sure I should take. We talked about how crazy the next few months are going to be. We talked about working weekends and how to get childcare covered. We talked about the kids and the house and the dishes and the laundry that is still in the chair in the corner of my living room as I type. And even though I had put in an almost twelve hour day including drive time, it fit. It seemed right.
Thursday morning was a different story. I woke up with my heart in two places. I went immediately into mom mode. Tired and exhausted, I yelled a little. Then felt guilty since I hadn't been home in two days. We had to buy water and ice for the Jog-A-Thon that I forgot about. Mackenzie needed a snack for school. Are we really out of Capri Suns? The usual, but this time it felt different. That high I had carried home with me was just about gone. All I could think was, "You are an asshole if you thought anything about this is going to be easy".
I got the kids to school and called my best friend. She always knows what to say. So I unloaded on her. I told her that the day before was amazing. That at one point during my meeting I realized that I was right where I had wanted to be in my former life. That life I had before kids, the one where I was proud of my degree, and my work experience. The life where I lead a team and worked really hard and was proud of what I did. I told her that it all seemed so clear to me on Wednesday. But now, on Thursday it was all so muddled again. Because stay at home mommy fits too. Because I still want to be a writer. Because I still want to be a blogger. And that I don't think I can do all of the things. How am I going to do all of the things?
To which she said, "It must really suck to be in a place in your life where you have everything you have ever wanted".
Oh. Ouch. Wow. Huh.
Sometimes all you need is a little tough love, even if it's in a sarcastic, not at all mean spirited kind of way. Between voice cracks and giggles I agreed. Somehow this is all part of the plan. A plan I had completely forgotten about. Before I had kids, I was pretty convinced that I would be a working mother. I had a working mother, she had a working mother. Working mother was in my genes. Then I had a baby and all hell broke loose. I could barely mother, let alone work a job outside of the home. That idea of doing both dried up faster than my breast milk. It took almost a year for me to say, "Ok, I'm a mother. A stay at home, all in, committed, mother". And some days I got it right and some days I got it terribly wrong. I had convinced myself via part time seasonal jobs that I was only really good at one thing, Stay at Home Mother. Then I started a blog, and I found that maybe I was good at two things, Stay at Home Mom and blogger, then writer, and then, suddenly I found myself as a working mom too. And each time I morphed into something else, or added on another title, I resisted until I just submitted. But not in a bad way, in a way that I just walked over the line I had been towing for awhile.
You know that part in Sweet Home Alabama when Melanie tells Jake that she loves her life in New York, but when she comes home, Alabama fits too? I feel exactly that right now. I feel like I can be an Assistant Store Manager and a mother. I feel like I can want to be successful at work and successful at home at the same time. I can want this blog and to be a writer, just as much as I want to work and be a mom too. I feel like Working Mom finally fits, but writer, blogger and just plain Mommy fit as well. Is it possible that all the hats really fit? And is it possible to wear them all at the same time? How on earth will they fit then?
The last week was kind of a whirlwind with traveling and finding some footing in this new "job". Not much has changed, but then in the same breath everything has changed. I'm not so afraid anymore. If I've learned anything, I've learned that we all get put on a journey for a reason. Maybe this one is to remind me of who I am, and what I can do. Maybe it's to change my heart and refocus my goals. Or maybe it's just to see how much I can take before I can crack... Whatever the reason it's going to be fine. It has to be.
Because this fits too.