It's been a while. Regrettably so, but given the fact that I took a liberating and fantastic new job in August, I had to commit to that and one other thing.
So, I chose my family.
It's strange. The idea that I probably can't have "it all" as a woman ... or man, for that matter. I am coming to terms with the hard fact that there really aren't enough hours in the day to do what I want, the way I want to do it.
I have always subscribed to the notion that I can get done, whatever I need or want to get done, if I just push myself. I know that if I have a project plan, motivation and enough wine, I can accomplish ANYTHING - like make jewelry or plan parties, for example.
With two kids and a demanding career, I remain steadfast in this regard, but have been rudely introduced to a concept known as "half-assing it". I will tell any new parents, "Hey folks. You can have it all. If you half-ass some of the things all of the time." I approach each day with stoicism, knowing that the result of my efforts will either be victory or "half assed-ness".
Half-assedness snuck up on me.
My husband seems to be able to forgive himself more than I can - if he works too much or isn't particularly available that week. I believe he's unapologetic because he needs to be. He doesn't want to miss out on anything the girls are doing, but he needs to remain detached to be okay with the reality that he will miss out every now and again.
I can't willingly detach and am hard on myself when I have no choice other than to do it - traveling for work or packed days of meetings come to mind.
I travel quite a bit. I spend time with clients. I strategize about my approach to the market on my own time. On the flip side, I do work from home when I'm not with clients. I'm genuinely friends with Mary Poppins (my nanny), and I never miss an important moment for the girls.
Sure, I don't know which classroom is which when I show up for the mid-semester "recital". I don't know the other parents. The teachers ask me who I am. And, some random mom usually corners Mary Poppins with "Really? They look just like you? They aren't yours? REALLY?"
Yes, you fool. They are MINE! And they look just like ME!
In light of all of this, and the fact that I don't like to set myself up for failure, I have the usual New Year's resolutions: 1) Be present for my family; 2) Focus on my job; 3) Save money; 4) Be healthy.
I've been so present for my family (#1) since December 19th that I am gleeful at the return of Mary Poppins, who was visiting her husband's family in Scotland over holiday. I've never been so relieved to immerse myself in my career pursuits (#2) upon her return. I believe I have a taste of what it may feel like for parents of older children when summer vacation comes to a blissful end.
We will subsequently visit #3 and #4 with additional humor and humility as I try a few new tactics that will likely highlight how I have all the wrong kinds of discipline.
Happy New Year!