Thursday, April 12, 2007

You Can't Have It All

A couple of years ago I read a quote by a feminist writer who said that for all of the positive things that came out of the feminist movement (and there are some things ladies--even the most conservative among us would not want to go back to the 1950's), the biggest disservice was that it perpetuated this idea that it was possible to have it all. Many feminists overlooked marriage and children and are now in their 40's and 50's wondering why they are alone. OR, they attempted to have it all and now have these really dysfunctional kids who never had real parenting or daughters with the attitude that they don't want to produce grandchildren. You've got these really smart "progressive" women contributing fewer and fewer great attributes (and the genes to match them) to each successive generation.

Anyway, I've had some you-can't-have-it-all-moments lately. My boss thinly veils how over the moon happy he is that Plantboy has not found a job yet and may end up doing something part time for bubkus here in the Land of the Frozen Chosen. He is happy because this means I will be staying. He says every day how much they don't want to lose me. Yesterday, he offered me a study skills class I have been wanting to teach ever since I got on campus. They are completely changing the format of how they are offering it (to fit my "unique" set of qualifications) and want me to do all of the curriculum planning and have given me a budget for textbooks and disposables--my choice. To me, it is really a promotion. It means extra money, but it also means extra work. It was a real pat on the back for me professionally to get this chance.

BUT . . .

If I was the man of the house this would be an awesome opportunity. Instead, my heart is torn. The job I have here is the job I was supposed to get 10 years from now when my kids were all in school and I could stay there forever. I don't even think I'd feel so shaken up if I wasn't going to have a 3 month old baby next fall when school starts. I want to be home taking Man Cub to kindergarten; I want to be home reading to and playing games with Poopy Pirate; I want to be the one BabyPete takes his first steps to.

And I won't be if I have to work full time. Part time would be a great trade off, but that would mean Plantboy has to find something very close and very soon with adequate pay.

Don't get me wrong; I am so grateful for my job skills and my work ethic. My wonderful parents saw to it that I did not enter the "real" world unprepared. I'm grateful that if my hubby's full time employment has to be put off a few more months then we are not entirely destitute. I'm grateful for a job with such regular hours and copious amounts of time off. I'm grateful to really enjoy what I do since I have to spend so much time at school each day.

Sometimes, though, the things we SHOULD be grateful for, don't always match up with what we WANT. I know that my desires are righteous, but I also know that we live in a natural world and there are consequences for everything. No matter how great we felt about it, going back to school was a risk. No matter how ideal a job in the Denver area would have been for us, Plantboy was not the only one who applied and the world is competitive. No matter how much I want to have it all--, lots of time with my family, active in the church, service to my neighbors, and, yes, the successful career . . . (you all know the list), I can't have it all. NOBODY can.


Desmama said...

Such an interesting post--something I've been thinking about for a while and will continue to think about since you blogged this. Having just read it, my "pensive time" is now setting in, but I wanted to comment and say something.

forecast calls for rain said...

Sorry things are going to way they are. I don't envy the position you're in at all. Having choices, although both good, is often difficult. Life would be easier if we didn't have the choices to make, and we only ever had one option but then we could never be as happy either. The title of the post was the best because tht really is the complete reality on life.

Big Bellied Momma said...

it was good to hear from you on my blog. congrats on boy #3. we are having girl #3 so i guess we are all just having more of the same! i am due june 19th so 2 months from tomorrow. i am excited, but a little nervous and glad i still have 2 months to prepare, although i am getting kind of uncomfortable. anyways, hang in there!