Where do we go from here: a revelation

Today I only have two kids at home: Mae and Audrey. Claire, of course, is at school and Luca spent the night at my in laws and will be gone all day with them.

So I’ve gotten to spend some really low stress time with my littlest girls and since Audrey slept the majority of the time, it’s really been just Mae and me.

Mae is a funny kid. Of all my kids, I’d say the majority of people upon meeting them, gravitate to Mae. I think it’s the chatty nature she exudes and also, she’s so darn cute. I love all my kids, but mostly I love that they’re all individuals.

With Mae it’s her personality. It’s huge. She always makes sure that everyone knows she’s in the room and while she’s there she’ll pretty it up with ribbons and pink and princesses.

Every day she dresses herself and lately she’s taken it upon herself to dress herself like the self proclaimed princess she is. Then she’ll show off her outfit while twirling and singing, “Princess!!” I seriously thought this was just a phase but it really hasn’t budged. In fact it’s getting stronger by the day. She now claims her name is princess.

Mae hasn’t shown even the slightest hint of jealousy at her siblings being gone. In fact, she’s enjoying her virtually one on one time with me and I’m starting to think Luca is the instigator. Because she has not done even one bad thing since last night. And when I told her it was nap time, she tucked herself in. No cries or protest. No hesitations.

She’s just a really sweet girl.

It’s nice, getting these rare moments with my kids. Because I usually have them all at once and it can be overwhelming at times. Some days I’m simply just trying to make it through alive. So when I can actually see my kids for who they are, not just as a gaggle of little bodies, it’s a wonderful change. I look at them completely differently. I see them as individuals and that’s such a gift in and of itself.

I’m proud of the children I’m working so hard to raise. Mostly, I’m so glad to have such good family around that will give me the time I need every now and again to remember who they are. It’s so easy to get lost in the day to day and forget why we’re here. Ten years ago I had no idea what I wanted from life or where I’d go. Now I know. I want to raise good people. I want to teach them how to love and respect. I want to show them that I’m always here when they need me. No matter what.

And during all this, I used I fear that my education would be wasted. That I spent all that time and training to become a nurse, a damn fine one at that, and for what? To babysit my kids?

It’s taken me a long time to let go. To realize that this is my job now. My kids are my job. I don’t obsess over them, and frankly, a day at my house is not rigid and scheduled. We live life as normal as we can and along the way I will stop and teach them something. But while they play, I read or cook or blog and they have to learn that life doesn’t revolve around them. But even so, they’re my job. And I love my job.

Since having Audrey I’ve cut way back on how much I’m at the hospital. I’ve been debating quitting all together for the last 6 months. I feel like my time is coming, it’s just so hard to say good bye to that part of my life, even if it is just temporary.

My husband works really hard so I don’t have to keep a job that pays. He’s told me over and over that I can quit at any time and we won’t go broke. And while that’s such a nice thing, because I know there are a lot of people out there who would love to have this situation, I’ve had a job since I was 12. Even before then, but I’ve had a paper trail of taxes being taken out of paychecks since I was 12. I don’t know what it is not to work for a wage. I know that being a mother pays off in the end, not in money, but in satisfaction. I’ve seen this first hand. I have a well adjusted almost six year old kicking butt at school who says please and thank you and means it. I love this job. I just don’t know how to make it my only job.

I’m at quite the impasse and I’m not sure where I’ll go from here.

When I heard that my boss was leaving, I pretty much figured that it was a sign. That it was OK to let go and move on.

It’s just so hard to do.

But right now my job is soccer practice and dance class and library time and teaching Luca how to read. Math problems, making lunches, keeping the house clean and somewhat organized. Having dance parties in the living room, family time on the weekends and staying up late on Friday nights with Matt. It’s realizing that the kids are growing and I’m never having another baby so I need to enjoy the time I have now.

There will always be sick people. That’s a guarantee. And for the past 7 years that I’ve held a job as a nurse, my work has spoken for itself. I love my work, but I love my kids more.

This is where I need to be. It’s where I want to be.

I just have to let go.

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About Cassie

Two sisters from two misters. What could be more fun?

Posted on September 3, 2013, in Cassie. Bookmark the permalink. 4 Comments.

  1. I’m so happy for you! You are doing what’s best for your whole family, including yourself. And just think, you’ll actually have more than one full day to spend with your husband now too!

  2. First, I love my kids all together, but sometimes I think I really do love them more when I am one on one with them. Especially Kate and Michael? Kate is a COMPLETELY DIFFERENT GIRL when she is not with her siblings. Not better, but it’s such a total personality change. I now recognize “acting out” even when it’s pretty subtle, and I can head her (or M) off when I need to.

    Second: will you take some assvice from a full-time work-outside-the-home-mom who works as much for her sanity as for the paycheck and would go part time if I could? If you decide to leave paid work to be all-the-time-mom until, say, Mae or Audrey is in school: You can always go back. I know there was some blather around the Interwebz about mothers who opted out, but, dude. You’re a nurse and an exercise instructor. Your skills will always be needed, two years from now, seven years from now. You already know you want to. I say: Do it. You can change your mind! It’s the beauty of having choices.

  3. Letting go can be so so hard even if you already feel like deep inside, you know what’s best for you. That doesn’t make it less hard if you, for example, love your job and are great at it. Just take your time, and some day, whatever decision you will take, will not only sound right rationally but also feel right on the emotional level. And if you regret it at some point, you can, as redpenmamapgh said, always make another decision and change everything again.
    One thing I know for sure is that you will always find the best decision for yourself AND for your family.

    Oh, and I am glad to hear Claire is doing well at school – does she like it?

  4. Yeah, man, you deserve this. I know you love your paid job and all, but your unpaid job is so demanding I don’t know how you’ve held on this long. Sure, it’s hard to leave behind something you’ve been doing for so long, but like you said, it’ll always be there for you to go back to if you miss it too much. FREEDOM, baby!

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