Part time working mothers.
I always have considered them in a patronizing way, as women without any kind of professional ambition, who secretly enjoy the housework and live in total abnegation for the sake of their children and husband.
My job was one of those things I would never let go, a bit like spending time alone with my husband and going out with our friends (can’t remember the last time we did any of those).
I even did great at the beginning, showing off with my perfect organization : leaving sooner in the afternoon and “finishing” my work in the evening when Emma (and later my husband) was in bed.
Yes, I was taking care of everything : I wasn’t like those business women coming home too late to see their child, I ate with my husband every evening (even though looking at my watch from time to time) and I managed to take care of the household (sometimes even without starting a fight).
OK, I was on my work computer from 20.00 for at least 4 hours, but a woman’s got to do what a woman’s got to do…
I guess if you are not a workoholic the situation is pretty clear to you. It took me 8 months to realize that it just won’t do.
You can’t make people happy around you if you are not happy yourself (cliché but true). And how could you be happy with exactly 3 minutes 43 seconds a day just for you (which seems a reasonable average of the time we spend in the toilet, doesn’t it? At work I mean, obviously at home we are not really alone in there – or are you?)?
This will sound very feminist (nothing bad with that anyway), but we, women, never really rest like men can. With or without children. I don’t know whether this is due to our sense of responsibility, anxiety, or whether we are just reproducing some mother figure, but we really need to have (the feeling we have) things under control.
What I mean is that when a woman decides to work part time, it is actually to be able to get all her jobs done without freaking out (I am not gonna list them here, but it’s so much more than the usual full time office work).
I work in audit (yeah, I know). It is not a nine-to-five job. It can’t.
So I decided to keep it this way… 4 days a week. For the 5 coming months, on Friday, my dear colleagues, you forget that I exist.
And this is exactly what I will try to remember. Because I am not going to work part time to take care of my child, nor of the house, nor of the laundry, nor of anything but me.
Well, somehow, I will of course. But more importantly I will take my time. And get back to who I am, my interests and my desires.
I am not convinced that motherhood took my personality away. I think I had lost it on my busy road, and I just needed taking a step back to realize it.