Tuesday, August 12, 2008

Torn between two loves....

Like working mothers everywhere, I have a dilemma. Do I continue to divide my time, energy, talents, etc. between my family and my professional work or do I go on the long-term mommy-track and give up my 2nd (3rd, 4th?) job of doing all the contracts, etc. for an interactive media design firm here in Atlanta?

This has an added pressure - as a homeschooler, I don't have the luxury of my kids being educated by someone else - all the lesson planning, teaching, evaluating - I do all that. I love it and I feel overwhelmed by it - like all great endeavors it has challenges and rewards.

I do get to work from home 3 days a week - but that has its pros and cons as well. The flexibility is nice but there is little or no separation of work and personal time. When you work from home, your co-workers don't care if they interrupt lunch/dinner/math lessons or whatever.

While I love what I do professionally - I adore the minutiae that is required for contracts review and negotiation (especially in the area of internet-based apps as the law is woefully behind the technology) but I regret having to cram lessons in the morning so I can be available for work in the afternoons. I detest the crabbiness that comes from being pulled in multiple directions all day every day - by 5pm, I'm ready to duct tape my kids to the mailbox and/or tell my boss to shove it. Since I get to do neither, the pressure builds. This does wonders for your love life, too.

So - what's a girl to do? Yes, we can afford for me to quit. But since I only get paid for PT (20) hours a week and after we pay for a sitter, gas, dry cleaning, lunches, etc., it's not the money that keeps my attention. I fear never getting a break from the kids. I dread never having a real "reason" to wear things other than jeans or sweats or put on makeup. I fear becoming that "frumpy" mom you always see at Target. I dread totally losing touch with the legal and professional world. But - I hate that I work many, many more hours than I get paid for...dilemma.

Off to watch some Olympics and ponder this some more......