In Career, Discussions, Discussions, Entrepreneurs, Life, Parenting, Women

I gave up a quarter of a million dollars to be with my family

And it sucks.

It’s really hard being a working mother, particularly since we have to go through 9 months carrying a child and then take at least 3 months off after the birth to recuperate and survive through the newborn stage before getting back to work.

I gave up a quarter of a million because it was a contract in another city (worth $250,000), and as a new mother, I now can’t really be away from Baby Bun for any long stretch of time until he is weaned off breast milk (6 months), and is old enough to be without his mother and main caretaker at night without being in some serious distress (right now, this is not an option, he is far too young to understand anything about working and careers.)

It’s only money… but is it wrong to feel a little sad about the situation?

I guess there will be other jobs and other contracts, but this one was confirmed that I would get it and *sigh*… it’s not easy.

Before you say anything, yes, my partner would have done the same.

He would have said no to these contracts in another city because he would have wanted to stay together as a family for at least this young tender stage, and actually, this is what he did before he took the contract that he got.

So in my particular case, it isn’t just a mother-only or female thing, but… still.

It still makes me rather sad .. or a better word for it, wistful about the whole situation.


THINKING ABOUT WORKING MOTHERS IN GENERAL

It does however, make me wonder how many mothers go through this on a regular basis, hamstringing their careers for the sake of their children, while fathers don’t seem to have to go through any kind of stigma if they have to travel 5 days a week to be away from their family.

When a child is sick, who stays home? The mother, right?

koala-cuteness-cuddling

When there are two important meetings in both of their lives on the same day, at the same time when they need to go pick up their child or do something family-related, whose meeting takes precedence?

Who pinch-hits all the time?

Even when I mention to my family that I want to start working as soon as possible, my mom and my brother give me a slightly horrified look like I would even consider NOT being at home to be with Baby Bun 24/7 because I am his MOTHER.

What about his FATHER?

Why doesn’t the guy ever get this kind of horrified reaction?

“MY GOD MAN!

You want to go to WORK?

And leave your child AT HOME alone with a stranger?

Or to put him in a daycare with strangers and strange children!??”

Sure, you can tell me it’s because I’m the one providing the milk and he is used to me, bla bla bla… but really, there’s no reason why a guy shouldn’t also be lambasted for not spending more time off work to take care of a newborn growing into a baby.

Or at least, to help.

Truth be told, it’s driving me insane to only have Baby Bun as company, which is why blogging has become even more important in my life.

He’s cute and all, but is not much in way of conversation.

Plus, I also feel my brain turning to mush because I don’t have anything interesting to talk about other than what Baby Bun has done all day. Or stuff I happen to come across on the internet. Or what I’ve read recently.

ALL SOMEWHAT BORING if I cannot also insert funny anecdotes about co-workers.

WHY CAN’T FATHERS TAKE OVER?

I have been struggling with this annoying idea that mothers are the only ones who can take care of their children.

Fathers can too, babies have absolutely no preference of one parent over another, or even if it’s their parents.

They only care if the person is there for them 24/7, and it could be a nanny, a grandparent, anyone, really, just someone familiar and there for them when they need them to be.

Some guys are much better caretakers than some women.

That’s not to say I don’t think I’m a good mother. I think I’m a great mother, and I always try my best to take care of Baby Bun, but I don’t want that to be my only defining role in life, and I want to have a career and be someone other than a mother.

So to read and hear about how working mothers dealt with this in the past, having to try and be this perfect mother, sexy wife as well as fighting in the boardroom to even be acknowledged that she had a brain and should be paid as much as a man, made me feel rather sad about the whole situation.

When they got home, they couldn’t sit on the couch and say: Hey honey, what’s for dinner?

They had to change and then make dinner for everyone, and after serving as the house elf and getting everyone to go to sleep, start the laundry and do all these motherly things that they couldn’t do because they weren’t able to (or  maybe because they DIDN’T BLOODY WANT TO) stay at home with their children.

makeup-lipstick-apply

Women in the past only had two roles: The Wife Of ______ or The Mother Of ______.

They were non-entities, and I don’t know about any other mother but I am not a non-entity.

Luckily, my partner is someone who cleans, cooks (he is the primary chef), and is willing to do laundry.

It isn’t so bad as before, he really does do a lot more than most modern guys, and he is aware that he has to take on extra work to help me out because I am sleep-deprived some days and unable to function beyond lying comatose beside a kicking, unable-to-nap Baby Bun.

His mother had already warned him repeatedly to help me out as much as he could, and getting a nice, ringing, REPEATED endorsement from my mother-in-law to pick up the slack and be a support to me, is fantastic.

I am not looking for pity (who does, especially if they can get a quarter of a million in a year), but I would like to hear some reassurances from other working mothers that this is normal to feel this way — to want to work and feel frustrated that you can’t.

That’s it.

That’s all I had to say.

 

(This short little rant turned into an actual post. Who woulda thunk it?)

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Sherry of Save. Spend. Splurge.

Millionaire at 36 after getting out of $60K of student debt in 18 months, a little over a decade earlier, using TheBudgetingTool.com. Since then, I have paid my $600K home in cash (my half was $300K), my $180K casr in cash, worked 50% of my career (taking 1-2 year breaks), and quadrupled my income within 2 years of graduating, going from $65K to $260K with an average lifetime savings rate of 50%. I could retire today if I wanted, but love my work-life balance as a freelancing consultant in STEM (Science, Technology, Engineering, Math). I am all about balance - between time and money, and also enjoying my money. I also post daily on Instagram @saverspender.

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53 Comments

  1. Anne @ Unique Gifter

    All I really want to say is “Amen.”
    I had to explain to coworkers yesterday that parental leave can be split between both parents. (I’m talking EI stuff here).
    My spouse’s previous employer required you to prove that you were the primary caregiver in order to let you take parental leave. Such bullshit.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      And why shouldn’t it be split? I think it’s great if Dads take off time too

      Reply
  2. CincyCat

    Just discovered your blog, and I love it! I didn’t read all of the replies, but I wanted to let you know that my husband and I share “pinch hitting” when one of the kiddos is sick or has a school vacation day. We both work full time, and so we both share the responsibility of caring for the kiddos. The majority of the time, we just take turns, but sometimes a meeting or a work project gets in the way. This method has worked well for us over the past 10 years. (And, I was an hourly/admin or contractor for most of this time period.)

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Thank you!

      I’m glad to hear that things are changing at least. If you ever read the book “Mad Women”

      … you’d read that Jane Maas had a tough time as a woman during that period, even with a supportive, quite modern husband.

      Reply
  3. vivien

    What industry do you consult for mommy bun?

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Sorry Vivien, I don’t reveal that kind of information, being Anonymous. Thanks!

      Reply
  4. Mom @ Three is Plenty

    I didn’t wait – I went back to work after 8 weeks. Breastfeeding didn’t work out for us, which made the choice easier. I didn’t have to worry about it – as soon as she was allowed in daycare, I was at work. Best decision I ever made. Even now, at 3 and a half, I can’t be home with her all day – I need to be using my brain daily!

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Breastfeeding didn’t work out for me either. I’m exclusively pumping milk for him to drink, and BF and I agreed on 3 months being the minimum before I could find work… which is now!

      I’m searching for contracts right now and I know some people can handle being at home all the time but I am not one of them.

      Reply
    2. Anastasia @ eco-babyz

      @Mom @ Three is Plenty: I just want to chime in regarding ‘using brain daily’. Just because a mom stays home all day with kids, doesn’t mean she doesn’t use her brain 🙂 lol I DO know what you mean, but I manage to get mental stimulation running 3 businesses from home and being with my kids at the same time! Am I perfect and have it all figured out? NOT EVEN CLOSE. Some days are pretty crazy. But it just works for me (and many moms I might add). We are all different and it’s totally okay to get your mental stimulation working outside the home, or in other ways. It’s all about finding what works for your kids AND you! 🙂

      Reply
      1. save. spend. splurge.

        If I ran a business at home, it’d be enough mental stimulation for me. If I didn’t work at all however? I’ve seen my cousins’ wives who stay at home with no work at all and with kids, and they eventually end up trying to find stuff to do, like become Pilates instructors, or go back to college…

        Reply
        1. Anastasia @ eco-babyz

          @save. spend. splurge.: Yes, I agree, most women NEED something, whether from home or outside the home. However I do personally know some women who do neither, they are ‘just’ staying home with kids – but their household is run like clockwork and they have very much a managerial position when it comes to managing household finances wiser than I ever could. I definitely think that growing your own garden, canning vegetables, homeschooling the kids, and running a tight ship is very much mental stimulation – probably more than I could ever handle 🙂 I couldn’t do that, but I know plenty of moms quite happy they can focus on their family and not feel torn between work/family or college/family, it works for them. We were all raised differently and what works for some, doesn’t work for everyone.

          Reply
          1. save. spend. splurge.

            Ah I see what you mean!

  5. SarahN

    This is something I worry about SO much! Like it’s already seems it’s not good enough to the BF and father than I don’t wear seductive clothes to work (I usually wear a uniform), and even though the BF has taken over the lion’s share of cooking, I still get the ‘what’s for dinner’ questions… Anyhow, I know my mother worked a lot as I was a kid, and I’m not worried it ruined me. Sure, I wish she was Betty Crocker/Amercian quintessential SAHM (I’m Aussie) but she wasn’t, and that’s who she is. It’s not that she doesn’t love me. Even if she had stayed at home til I was 2 or 10 or whatever (she went back from maternity leave EARLY i was such a boring baby) she wouldn’t have been doing crafts, or baking nightly… So yeah. I must read all the other comments now…

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      BF has learned not to ever ask me what is for dinner because I will say: Whatever you make/made, honey.

      As for clothing, BF tells me as long as I am comfortable, it’s sexy enough. He likes sweatpants on me (I don’t even own a pair) because he thinks I’m comfortable (more) in them than in a wrap dress but this is the opposite. I prefer wrap dresses, and he is delighted (a dress is his favourite thing for me to wear).

      He knows his cooking is what attracted me to him in the first place, and he’s vegan, so whatever I make would NOT be vegan and he doesn’t want to eat it (his belly hurts from dairy / meat, not that he is taking a stance or anything). I am less picky. I will go / eat vegan without a problem and occasionally ask for some meat.

      I am not a Betty Crocker mother either in that case. I don’t think I’ll be doing crafts, baking nightly (that’s BF”s job!), or anything remotely child-friendly unless you want to count reading in the mix. I’ll read to the kid for sure.

      Reply
  6. Stefanie @ The Broke and Beautiful Life

    I never appreciated how incredible my mom was growing up. As an executive at one of the largest companies in the world, she was always traveling, but she still managed to make it to everything and was never noticeably absent from my life. My father also worked full time. But even with a full time nanny, I never felt disconnected from my parents, nor did my four other brothers and sisters.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      That gives me hope!!

      Reply
  7. Erika

    My parents shared a lot of the parenting duties when I was growing up. My dad actually stayed home with us a lot when we were sick, just because he had more leave than my mom. They worked in the same field and both took regular business trips.

    My mom eventually accepted an early retirement and became a stay at home mom. I know my situation was rare, even under modern circstances. I’ve always admired my parents for the fact that they didn’t worry about gender rolls and they took both their careers and parenting seriously.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Again.. more hope. I am really hoping this is the case when BF is not working and I am.

      Reply
  8. Anastasia @ eco-babyz

    Sounds like you have a great, supportive husband! I am home with 2 kids by myself for 3 weeks out of every month (hubby works hard all that time out of state). Not easy, I run 3 small businesses from home. I’m lucky if I get a shower every 3 days. Seriously. I console myself with the fact that I have it easier than many moms, some single moms have to support their kids AND do everything else. At least I have the financial support of my hard working husband, enough for me to invest time into my passion – photography, and to be home with kids. I think as moms, no matter what we choose, there will always be something we’ll regret down the road. I try not to beat myself up over it. I know I’m not going to regret spending time with my kids, but I may regret ignoring them a little too much while trying to answer client emails 🙂 But then I feel like if I had no professional endeavors, I’d regret that too.

    I think an infant is the hardest! I had a really hard time 0 to 1 with both my kids, it’s just tough when they seem to need you every single second. While I personally feel very fulfilled being a WAHM and spending most of my time with kids, I completely understand mothers who do want to continue with their career. Motherhood is so demanding, I found work outside the home to be much EASIER than staying home with kids. I kind of have a little of both, I enjoy client photo sessions/shooting weddings when my kids are not haunting and nagging, but then I come home and realize I actually missed them! lol
    If I had acceptable childcare (like a close relative), I would leave them more often in someone’s care so I could have more dedicated work time. But my husband and I are both not fans of leaving them with strangers.

    In my experience, closed doors only mean better ones open in the future, so you’ll be fine! 🙂

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      The balance between work and family is really hard. I don’t want to ignore him but I want a career too.

      Right now I am at the stage of 0-1 and I am planning on having 2 more.. so this will be interesting.

      Thanks for your encouragement!

      Reply
  9. Tania

    I do know some fathers who have full custody of their children(divorced, reckless and absentee mother). I also know a young father who takes care of the baby after the mother moved away to another state for college. My dad did quite a bit too. He cooked dinner every night (still does) and took us to all of our activities, helped us with our homework, etc.

    That said, you are completely right about societal expectations and the pressure on women in the workplace or from her peers. I can tell you so many stories of my friends who are mothers and how they have been more harshly judged than men in similar situations.

    I also encounter the same being childless. A woman who never had children is also perceived differently than a man. Anything from pity to disdain to exclusion.

    Other contracts will come along I’m sure when you are ready but yeah I can see how that would be a bummer and I do like that you own it. Some women try to paint too much a rosy “everything is peachy!!” picture. One of the reasons I read your blog is because you just say it like it is.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Thanks Tania.

      Yes, I think single and childless is perhaps the worst stigma for women. Everyone assumes that a) she wants to be with someone.. and b) she wants a child. Not every woman wants that, and it’s ridiculous to put that expectation on women when we don’t do the same to men.

      No. Nothing is always peachy in my world because I’m a real person with actual worries and stresses. I am most worried that nothing will come up before it is time for me to have my second child. That’d be the worst.

      Reply
  10. ArianaAuburn

    It sucks, but there will be other opportunities for you and your child. You are blessed to have the training to enter the workforce and live with people who help you out on raising your young family. If anything you can take the off time to refresh and train on new skills to show any potential employer that you deserve a contract. Who knows, maybe a better contract will come.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Thanks for the encouraging words. I won’t be training on any new skills because projects are where I learn new skills.. but still, I know this is not forever. It’s just hard to say no to so much money.

      Reply
  11. Stephanie

    I read somewhere that the stigma against men who take time off to take care of kids is actually worse than the stigma against women who work and hire day care, which means that single dads have it the worst. People seriously need to stop being so judgmental! Aside from the extremes of being abusive and always hovering over your kids, there is no right way to be a parent.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      GAH. Poor single fathers. Wait, what about fathers who stay at home? Aren’t they discriminated against the worst?

      Reply
      1. Stephanie

        @save. spend. splurge.: My guess is that it depends on the family’s circumstances – how much income the mother in the family with the stay-at-home dad or the single dad makes and where they work. Most research in this area seems to focus on women, so I haven’t seen too many studies describing what happens.

        Lately, I’ve been reading more than usual about gender in the workplace, and it seems like the root problem is not injustice against women per se, but a strongly supported social norm that society follows. The social norm just happens to have men in power and not taking care of kids, which is why we hear a lot more about injustice against women. But the more I read, the more I learn that it is not punishing women, it is punishing all people, male and female, who deviate from it. Therefore, my solution would not be to just promote feminism and female empowerment, but to promote letting people just be themselves and doing what works for them, whether it means that men and women are going to break or keep traditional gender roles. (Part of that would include empowering women who want to be empowered. As a female engineer, if I had been born fifty years earlier, I’m pretty convinced that I would have been a lot less happy.)

        I hope that one day, my partner and I can be like you and your BF. It looks like you’ve struck a work-life and a gender balance in your relationship. You live in Canada’s biggest city, and I’m sure that more good contracts will come up sooner or later. Reasons like this are part of why you are minimalist, have good saving habits, and have many savings, right?

        Reply
        1. save. spend. splurge.

          You’re right. Everything you have said has a perfect ring of truth and rationality. Contracts will come along (more of them) and I shouldn’t stress out. I am only in my 30s and I have still, 35 years left to go to work as much as I want. I am trying to keep this in mind but it is hard to see the forest for the trees, you know?

          Thank you.

          Reply
  12. Lila

    I think no matter what you decided to do, someone (family, friends, acquaintances, blog readers) would have a different opinion and probably judge you for it.

    I’ve heard mothers say they love their kids but they can’t be at home all day. I don’t think this makes them any less of a mother. It just means that you’re a full human being, motherhood is just one part of you.

    I also think you made the right choice. Not all mothers care about their little ones like you do. Life is a series of trade-offs. I don’t care what “The Secret” says, life is about trade-offs. I’m sure you’ll be able to land another contract similar to this one once he is much older.

    Look you’re educated, intelligent, and have a lot of working years to look forward to. You’ll be able to land great contracts again. My mom often wishes she had worked less and spent more time with me. She ran her successful business before retiring at age 57.

    As for women being defined as mothers and wives, it’s interesting, because culturally for most of history throughout various cultures it was the norm for women to stay at home and take care of their families. They didn’t know otherwise. They didn’t know what they didn’t know.

    I’m sure there were happy women as well as unhappy women. Most jobs were also dangerous throughout history: coal mining, construction, farm work, factory work, etc.

    It was actually beneficial for most women to not work. If they did work then they tried to stick to safe jobs like teaching, housework, child-care (governess work), nursing, etc. I also read its usually poor women that worked, not middle-class or wealthy women.

    Then came the industrial revolution and we eventually had desk jobs by the early 20th century. As a result now we have many jobs that we previously didn’t.

    Anyway if you read back far enough in history you come across fascinating women who did the best they could with the hand they were dealt with by life.

    I read about the courtesan Veronica Franco who was able to educate herself back when most women weren’t able to get an education because she was a courtesan. The French scientist Émilie du Châtelet was quite accomplished and yet another French scientist Marie Curie is famous for her work.

    An English woman Mary Delany invented paper-mosaicks and became famous for them, to this day her work is in British museums. Also just because you were a man doesn’t mean you were better off.

    Men often had to go to war and came back injured, if they were high born men then they got arranged marriages as well. There was the Hundred Years’ War between England and France. Back in those days they didn’t have treatment for vets like we do now.

    An Irish heir James Annesley was kidnapped and sold off by his uncle as an indentured servant and worked as one for 12 years, this was done so his uncle could removed him from the line of succession.

    He tried to escape and the third time he was successful, he came back and there was a huge trial, the court eventually ruled in his favor but his titles weren’t returned to him before he died.

    It’s interesting they ruled in his favor when there was no such thing as DNA back then. Anyway, my whole point is that men were as much bound by societal expectations as women were back in the day and neither of them knew any different.

    Kind of makes one wonder what people will say of us in the future.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      This really helped. Life is about tradeoffs and I still have a lot of working years ahead of me. It’s just been so long since I’ve worked and I feel like my net worth is stagnating / dwindling, I think that’s why I’m antsy…

      Reply
    2. Tania

      @Lila: Very interesting, the historical perspective and how it has changed. One of the reasons I love the series Mad Men is it highlights how different it was for women in the mid-century when my own mother was entering adulthood. I’m not a mother but as a result I can observe my friends and family with an objective eye. I watch friends who say they want their daughters to be able to take care of themselves, have a solid career and be independent but yet are highly judgmental of peers who have chosen that path (because it’s different from theirs). This makes no sense to me as they are sending a different message to their daughters than intended. I do believe women are each others’ harshest critics and I try to be very aware to not let other women’s choices affect how I feel about my own. I do believe the criticism often comes from a defensive place at times but also the conflict every woman feels.

      Reply
      1. Lila

        @Tania: Tania, yes I think it’s unfortunate that they would say that. I agree women can be very harsh toward each other. I’ve noticed that women who come from affluent backgrounds or have affluent husbands choose to be stay at home mothers at some point. It is more accepted within their circle than in middle-class or poor households.

        This can backfire too. The New York Times did this story in early 2000’s about women opting out of the workforce, they followed up with them last year and some of the women had divorced and it was difficult for them to go back to the high-paying careers they left behind.

        I live in DINK (Double Income No Kids) household and honestly, neither me nor my male partner think careers are anything too great. Both me and my partner want to reach financial independence and leave the workplace. Some people are fortunate to find their passion and make them into a career like the author of this blog, but not everyone is as fortunate.

        I think it’s great that you are following your own path, don’t let the opinions of others cloud what you want to do with your own life.

        Reply
        1. save. spend. splurge.

          I agree. I’m really lucky to love what I do. I actually enjoy the challenge of my job!!

          Reply
  13. Shannon @ Financially Blonde

    I completely understand how you feel!!! I actually had to give up a promotion after my son was born because I wasn’t in a place to uproot my family and it was a painful decision. I don’t think that wanting to work and be successful makes me a bad mom, I actually think it makes me a good one. I love my son dearly, but I don’t want him to have the pressure of being at the center of my world. I don’t think it’s good for either of us. He is now 8 and there are times when I am more available than not depending on my work schedule, but he understands and loves me and I make sure we have quality time together not necessarily quantity time.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      It’s just such bad timing, and I wish this project was in my city rather than elsewhere. It would have been a perfect ,resounding YES… but he is far too young right now to be left alone.

      Reply
  14. Morgaine

    Man, it would be hard to turn that money down! I do hope you can get another contract like this later on. One thing to note, it does seem that the stigma of men helping out or even going on paternity leave seems to be lessening, thank goodness. For us, though, T makes 2x what I do and I have a top-up so when the time comes I will be taking the full leave. But, I know if the situation was reversed we would probably split the year instead of one person taking the full year. Also, T has a flexible work arrangement and is able to work from home but where I work that isn’t an option. So if the kid was sick, he’d be more likely to stay home than me (also we have the MIL in the basement to help out as well). Hopefully we can make it out of the dark ages eventually 😉

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      We both don’t have flexible work arrangements. We can’t work from home due to the nature of our jobs (have to be on-site).. so this kind of screws things.

      IT was really hard to say no.

      Reply
  15. Sara

    Are delayed start dates an option in your field? Could you leave the baby for a few hours and got talk to a headhunter about finding work on or around October 1st?

    I’m sure it’s frustrating right now, but your schedule of not-always-consistent contracts may make for the perfect solution for a working mama. My mom loves working but I also know that she wished she could work on a contract basis so she could have occasional periods away from the office.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Unfortunately no. They wanted to start in 3 weeks and I WAS available in 3 weeks but ultimately it is not the right city and I can’t go with him being so young.

      The thing is more that I haven’t worked in a long while.. since I came back from the U.S. and found out I was pregnant. I’m just itching to WORK. I need SOMETHING to do and then I’ll be content to take a year off again.

      Reply
  16. AdinaJ

    I feel you. The worst part is feeling like it’s completely socially unacceptable to admit even thinking that you’re not completely and entirely fulfilled by your role as a mother. Which, when you think about it, is insane. I’m a thirty-something woman with a demanding career I enjoy and an eclectic variety of interests, none of which revolved around kids before I had kids – how on earth could spending 24/7 with a baby replace all that? I mean, I’m not sure ANYONE can be fulfilled solely by that, but it’s certainly not the case here.

    Loving my kids and enjoying our time together is a huge part of my life/who I am now, but it can’t be everything. It should be ok to admit missing and wanting other things.

    Also, part of being a parent is providing (financially) for your kids. $250k is a whole lot of providing. I’d be disappointed at missing that opportunity too.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Exactly. How can a baby or a child totally fulfill that void of adult interaction and brain challenges?

      Yes well.. I cried myself to sleep last night. Not because I don’t want to do it for my family but because it’s just so frustrating after so long to see a contract, be confirmed for it and then not take it.

      Reply
  17. Grace

    I hope you know that you are doing the right thing and what’s right for your family. I just had a coversation with my boss about this the other day…work will always be work, but family will be there for you when the work is over. Your baby will not be able to say it, but I be he thanks you for staying with him while you can.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      He needs me right now especially in his first year. I am still looking for contracts but local ones where I don’t have to leave him during the week. He’s really too young to be without his mother.. especially since I’ve been the #1 person in his life to date.

      Reply
  18. NZ Muse

    Eff no. I would feel a huge pang. (Especially since for me $250k is more than I’ve earned in my entire career accumulated to date, ha.)

    I’ve actually got a bit of a ranty post about parenthood coming up next week wondering how the hell we actually do it.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      I guess for me it’s a lot of money but it isn’t unattainable. I’ve worked for amounts like that in the past, like 10 weeks for $100K and so on… so $250K is a lot of money to be sure, but I can get it again I just don’t know when. That’s the real problem is the WHEN.

      Reply
  19. CorianneM

    When I was 7 or 8 years old, my mom went on a holiday to New Zealand for three weeks. Though I didn’t know it at that time (of course – I was 7!), some people thought she was ‘abandoning’ me and my dad (my younger brother was staying with my aunt as he was in his first year of kindergarten). They were a few fun weeks for 7-year-old me – I did not feel at all abandoned! Some of the neighbours cooked dinners for us a few days, or we went to a restaurant… (obviously, my dad didn’t like to cook every single day 😉 and took advantage of every single opportunity to not cook dinner) but I was totally happy, even without mom! I remember she called every single morning in the last week (she told me years later it was because she was really really homesick) and I was very impatient that she was calling every single day “I’m fine, mommm” (poor her, in hindsight).

    So what if a father takes care of the kids when mom is working? As long as they’re taken care of (fed, bathed, and put to bed on time), I think children are pretty happy regardless of who’s doing the actual tasks.

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      I’d agree with that. Right now though, Baby Bun is too young to be left alone. The contract would have been a year of me not being there Monday to Friday and that’s really unacceptable especially for a young baby. He would not understand that one day I am there 24/7 and then suddenly not at all…

      Reply
  20. Liquid

    As long as we’re not living in poverty, a strong domestic relationship is more important than a quarter million dollars. I hope my future girlfriend would feel the same way. When your baby grows up make him read this post of yours so he understands what good parents he has, because they made big sacrifices to keep the family together 🙂

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Now I just have to find a contract locally and take less money I guess. It just sucks really hard…

      Reply
  21. Well Heeled Blog

    Can you get a babysitter / night nanny and pump during the day? Or pick up less stressful contract work? Even though you might not need the money, a couple hours away a day might be the perfect balance between being there for Baby Bun and getting some adult interaction. 🙂

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      Well the contract work I pick up, is always going to be full-time and onsite, 40 hours a week. No way around that, I don’t work from home as a consultant.

      I also don’t work part-time in my job, it doesn’t exist as an option.

      I also don’t have a problem with Baby Bun at night, because he sleeps 5 hours, then sometimes another 5 hours or 3 hours after waking up for his night feed, so I only wake up once or twice a night to pump, which means I get some decent sleep these days (4 hour stretch, then a 2 hour stretch).

      If my contract was local (no travel required), it would be ideal, but I am turning down this contract because I would have to travel Monday to Friday, which is not what I want to do especially while pumping (you can’t fly with more than 3oz of milk).

      I think for the summer it would be OK for me to pop him into a sling and take a walk around downtown to interact with adults even if it’s just an hour or so a day. *sigh*

      Reply
  22. Midori

    I think it is very reasonable to feel that way… 🙂 I would feel the same too if I had a kid…

    I hope I get a boyfriend like yours someday… to get a guy that helps out and be an equal. Seems hard these days…. care to make a post about how to find a guy like that? 😛

    Reply
    1. save. spend. splurge.

      It’s hard making choices for your family. It’s also hard because I haven’t worked in a while (since getting pregnant and so on), so I feel this sense of urgency to make money to secure more savings before having a second and third child.

      Haha! I have no idea how I found a guy that helps out like that. He is just someone who helps out. Since he works and I don’t right now, I’m the one taking care of Baby Bun most of the time but once I start working, we will split the responsibilities and I will probably continue the night shift of feeding and pumping, while he will continue to cook, clean and do laundry for the baby.

      Reply

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