I am not certain if any of my fellow blogger friends experience this, but I frequently create posts that I simply cannot release until they are “ready.” I have a ton of them. This wouldn’t be a big deal if I would post something in their places, but there times when I just lack the capacity to hit PUBLISH. This post took several tries until I felt that it was done…
A friend recently shared her frustrations over giving so much time to a day job, and having very little time left over for her family. I remember feeling this way – – as though I had somehow sold myself to the lowest bidder. I began to share my story with her, and she burst into tears. She said that no one had ever taken the time to really tell the truth like this. Facade worked when we were in our 20’s, but real life rolls around when you become a woman of a certain age. Stuff gets real, and you have to be able to tell yourself and others the truth. The truth helps all of us find freedom. Here is my truth.
I started off with so many goals and beliefs, but ended up selecting my initial graduate school focus based upon what others expected of me. Then, just as it does for everyone, life happened. Things were thrown in my path, and my educational and career pursuits changed. Eventually, I found myself in a new town, with new people, and new industries to consider. It could have been a do-over IF I bothered to step outside of my comfort zone. I didn’t. I accepted what seemed to be a safe option. It wasn’t, and I spent several more years pouring out my life, and wasting my energy and creativity, in an environment that did not appreciate, or adequately compensate me.
Was my misery the company’s fault, or my own? Why didn’t I leave? The short, and easy answers are a)very much my own, and b) fear. I knew better. I knew that I could do and be better, but I feared stepping out. Why? I accepted an underachieving, lack of supervisory support, stressing over stupidity environment as a better proposition than the uncertainty of possible success. That sounds so stupid, doesn’t it? How many of us are guilty of similar choices? Do you remain in horrific relationships just because you fear never finding anyone else? Have you dumbed down your resume or accomplishments, and settled for a safe position? Bigger and better are normally far outside of our comfort zones. What does that mean? If we want better, we have to move!
It has been almost 1 full year since I worked full-time in the corporate cubicle jungle, and I do not miss it at all. I’d love to tell you that I immediately walked into a room, completed and sold my books, and earned millions from traveling the globe with worship & writing conferences. Nope, that didn’t happen…yet… 🙂 Something even greater happened: I became the wife and mom that I always wanted to be. I am no longer too exhausted, stressed, or distracted to engage fully with my family. I have the freedom to be present wherever and whenever I am needed, and that gives me more satisfaction than I could ever express.
I realize that not many families have the option to explore working from home, and I respect that different families have to make various choices. This isn’t a judgement post. Moms work. ALL Moms work. I get that, and won’t join the stay home vs work outside debate. This is just a glimpse of my journey along the path to a do-over. I hope that you will not allow fear, or the words and expectations of others to shape your views or choices for yourself. You don’t have to fall prey to what society says that you have to be. You can be exactly who and what you decide to be. So, if you have taken a few wrong turns, or fallen off the wagon 1 or 1 million times, make today the start of your do-over.
I believe in you. You deserve to be happy, and to pursue the life of your dreams. Kick fear out, and let faith in. Break out of the walls of complacency, and go for it. If I can do it, I know that you can do it! I’m cheering for you!
Until next time,