It's always been a goal for my husband and I to get in a position suitable for me to stay at home. Last year with the news of our little bun-in-the-oven, really set the timeline for me to make the commitment. I truly loved my work, my projects, and of course my co-workers but my family came first.
I've always worked. I babysat kids in my early teenage years but my first real job was at the local YMCA. Again, I love the smell of chlorine so I was in the right place for me. I, then, eventually became a lifeguard and a swim instructor that I worked as until I graduated college with my BS. So, working for me has been a way of life for more than half of my existence, changing would not be an easy thing.
A year ago, we were developing the next generation of a therapeutic HIV vaccine and which was heavily involved. I couldn't imagine myself not there but I also couldn't imagine myself not at home either. The struggle was the same one when I was determined to go into cardiology (blog: Flashback part 1). I thought of different scenarios to try to make both work and my family happy. One would be staying in the city working and hiring a Nannie. However, I know what my kids need and there's only three people I trust to take care of my children outside of my husband and I. So that option was out. Another option was to be part-time or even a contractor just a few days a week but too many people were doing that already so I wasn't too confident I could do that too.
Time was getting closer for me to return as my maternity leave was coming to an end. I had to make up my mind. My husband and I decided it would be best to just part ways. You must know that I loved that job! I grew so much there. I was encouraged to explore and to understand what I was doing. The smallest detail would constantly ring through my mind like, "is the pH causing the cells to not produce this or that?", "could I have incubated longer?", "at what point will the genes up regulate production of X?", or "what would happen if I threw everything in the culture plate together? Would it make biological sense?". All my energy was in my work but not as much as at home. I thought to myself, "Where would my family be if I put all my energy there?"
We really thought that this decision would really be hard for me to make and we were right. However, it was temporary during my two weeks notice that I worked out. I would cry to and from work, an hour to an hour and a half each way, remembering all the good times and all the bad times too. So my crying was fueled by sadness, by anger, you name it! I was a mess! I really thought this job defined me. It really didn't. Remembering back when I wanted to be a cardiologist and I immersed myself in all aspect of heart disease I really could do it but I wanted a family, to be with them, and watch them grow. I completely stopped with no hesitation. Same in this situation. I landed a job, learned the science of it, became good at what I did then had a family... It was time to focus on them.
The best thing I learned about myself is it's not one particular subject that defines me but rather the questions I asked. If I found something broken then I would try to fix it. Having all the tools around me and people who are considered experts in their field really helped me along the way. Then I must ask you, "Are you defined by your job or your thought process?". I know my little brother has the same thought process as I do. That man can take a part a car and put it back together without a manual because he understands cars and what they need to function as a car.
So I must end here and go get car tags for my husbands car.
Until tomorrow, kindest blogging wishes!