My good friend has a new post on her blog.
There are opinions flying.
So as not to clutter up her blog I'm posting mine here. :-)
I used to work. My co-worker was a mom who was at work before me and left after me. She had 2 school aged girls. She used to make comments about how she was so exhausted after work, how her sister was basically raising her kids and what-not. My co-worker had awesome nails, drove a new car and her clothes and bags were like...Gucci, Burburry etc.
I saw that she would call her children after school and say hello. How nice to get a phone call from mom.
Then it dawned on me. I'm THAT person! To my children I'M THAT PERSON! I realized that by the time I got home I was in the same house, during waking hours only 4 hours a day with my own children! I got home at 5:00 and the kids went to bed at 9. That seemed okay until I realized that I may be in the same home but I wasn't connecting with the kids. I was cooking, stressing about my day at work and the next day at work. By the time we finished homework and I cleaned and they played with their friends, watched TV etc...we actually only talked all of about 50 words to one another. Talking...will they remember that?
THAT IS NOT QUALITY OR QUANTITY TIME!
WEEKENDS! I thought. Weekends are where we hang out and spend quality time.
Do your homework. Okay you can play with your friends. Okay lets play a game...that will last for the week as a solid memory with mom and dad. CHURCH that is a family thing. Oh wait, I'm not with them at church they go off with their friends. Did we connect today? Will they remember this time together?
When do we get to connect? What is their favorite color? What is their favorite band? What do THEY think of me working? How much time do we have together before they become a teenager and drive away or worse yet spread their wings and fly out of our home for good? ...counting...HOLY COW! THAT'S NOT LONG ENOUGH!
Then, IT happened. I was 33 years old, sitting at my kitchen table when my chest began to feel uncomfortable. Then I became weak. I tried to walk to my husband and collapsed in the floor. Half of my heart had stopped beating. It was a condition I was born with that had gone undetected my whole life! I should have died. Sudden Death Syndrome should have taken my life THAT day. Why didn't it? Why? I lay there in ICU surrounded by elderly patients. It was my eldest son's 11th birthday. Tubes ran into my body and up my nose. I awaited a heart surgery that would cure me. I had been given TIME!
I got a clue. I quit. I gave up my manicures...boo hoo. We now have 2 used vehicles, basic cable, and eat in more than we eat out. I'm a much better mom now because I have time to plan, play and pretend.
It's been 4 years since I last worked outside the home. What has changed? Our eldest son aged from 11 to 15 (next month). He has more childhood memories with mom and dad than you can shake a stick at! We can talk, look each other in the eyes and talk and laugh! He'll begin drivers training next month. I can't tell you how happy I am to have had these past 4 years of time with him unhindered by thoughts of work or stress from work. We have had time...period!
Our sons have all aged, grown, loved, laughed. They are 10, 7, 3 and 3. Time is on our side. I was given time by God and He showed me how to actually MAKE time...by not giving it away to others, by sharing it with my God given family, by NOT working outside the home when I have the chance Not To. If we have the ability Not to...Take That Opportunity! There will probably be times when you HAVE to!
I wonder how my co-worker's life is going? Her children would be in High School and Middle school now. I wonder if they like their mom's nails? I wonder if that will be a special memory when they leave home...in 3 years? I wonder if that time at work has been time spent well?
There are only so many hours in a day. MAKE TIME. It's a gift. Don't squander it away on frivolous stuff. Time, my friend, is precious.