Thursday, February 13, 2014

Life-Work Balance for a Stay at Home Mom.

I am ready for the weekend.

Work has been busy.  I am in charge of two divisions: medical and domestics.  In the past several weeks, I have fairly handed over the reigns of the domestic division to Dan.  He, I should point out, has a J-O-B of his own, with drawings, and meetings and deadlines.  But, he has been pulling double duty, saint that he is, as I have fairly abandoned my domestic responsibilities.  This is because the medical division is hopping, unfortunately.

I had a business trip to NYC.  Our meeting was fantastic.  Dr. Healey was smiling and satisfied, which is most reassuring.  We chatted about a few things, and as we finished up and parted ways, we were told that Brent's next follow up would be in a year. We have never gone such a length of time between appointments, which is a solid victory.  Brent was fairly skipping on our way out.

We went to a movie in celebration.  By the time we returned to Ronald McDonald House a few hours later, my phone rang. University Hospitals was calling.  They found melanoma in the sentinel node on the left side. Brent needs more extensive surgery. And treatment. For a year.

Go ahead and swear, because I certainly want to.

As we travelled back to Ohio, our Angel Flight pilot chatted with me a bit while Brent snoozed in the back of the plane.  He told me a story about how pretty early in his career, he was very driven, but was cautioned by an older friend about the value of punching out and making family a priority.  This friend spent Christmases with the pilot, rather than with his own family, because, as he confessed, the kids grew to hate him.  It made quite an impression on the pilot, who sold one of his businesses and cut back on his hours, with absolutely no regrets.

So, my job has been busy this week: travel, paperwork, correspondence, research, phone calls....  I may have mentioned that I have not been terribly engaged prior to this trip, and rather distracted.  Dan, ever my rock, has been planning a very important birthday party.  Olivia turns 6 tomorrow, my favorite Valentine's gift.

I woke up this morning, and thought about all of the things that I needed to do, which is a lot. Dan has put together plans to make Olivia's birthday a special one.  Considering the fact that I missed it entirely 2 years ago, and only arrived in the evening for it last year (both times at MSKCC) I should be right on board with him, a partner in making it special.  I have been very busy with work, no different in some ways, than the friend of the pilot.  Granted, I am not driven in my 'medical job' by the desire for material things, but from Olivia's tender perspective, does it matter?

So, this morning, I snuggled with Liv as I woke her up for the last time as a five year old, giggling and teasing.  We took our time getting ready and I drove her to school.  When the kids get off of the bus today, I am going to punch out for two days to celebrate the gift of family, and particularly the gift of my youngest.

And I am very grateful for my first Valentine, who drives the train when I disappear either physically or emotionally.  Dan means the world to me, and to our family.  He has always had a good life-work balance. I keep finding my way back, because of him.

1 comment:

  1. Goodness, made me tear up. Enjoy your family time to the fullest!
    XOXO to Ramer Nation!