Monday, April 07, 2014

Eating cake: Also known as To Work or not To Work.


One of the first questions people started asking me when I announced my pregnancy was, "So are you going to quit your job?"

Am I going to quit my job?

What a weird question, don't you think?

Part of me thinks why in the world would I quit my job?  I sweated and stressed through years of college for this job, I've been eating breathing and sleeping this job for the past four years, why would I quit?  This is my passion, my love, a great source of satisfaction and fulfillment in my life.  Why would I just up and quit something that means so much to me?

The other part of me thinks, Of course I'll quit!  I'm going to have a totally helpless newborn attached to me!  A human being who doesn't even know the absolute basics of life.  I have to teach her how to sleep, how to eat, how to navigate this great big world around her.  When in the world will I have time to do anything but keep this kid alive?

I am jealous of parents who seem to know it all immediately.  You know, the parents who have a name picked out the moment the sperm hits the egg, parents who know how they're going to deliver, how they're going to feed, how they're going to sleep train.  Parents who are parents long before they are parents.

I know a lot of people who have seemed to know as soon as they got pregnant what they will do about work.  Their mind is made up before pregnancy.  It is easy to decide to quit their job or continue with their job because that was always the plan.

About the only plan I've ever had is that there is no plan.

Greg has been extremely supportive of whatever I have decided to do.  "You wanna stay home with the baby?  That's great, Bon."  "You wanna work every day?  That's great, Bon."  "You want to do both and have your cake and eat it too?  That's great too!"

As it turns out, having cake and eating it sounds very tempting to me.

I juggled with the decision for months.  As soon as I got pregnant, my mind was a constant swirl of conflict and confusion on the issue of work.  So many factors played into it- our financial situation, my energy level and need for constant interaction, my love for teaching, what would be best for the child, the worry that it would be impossible to leave a little baby behind while I jived with hormonal teenagers all day.  A decision would seem to form in my mind only to be erased the next day by a whole new set of ideas.

This is not to mention the silent (and sometimes not so silent) war that is waged between working and SAHMs.  Each side sticks to their decision faithfully, zealously defending their right to work or not work, the decision that they determined is "best" for their child.  Not even a mother yet, I found myself offended by almost anything that was said on the issue by either side, as if I wasn't good enough for either side because I didn't know what I was going to do.  I don't know if there is a "mommy" issue as sensitive or defended as this one. (Unless you want to go into the whole debate of breastfeeding and we all know that we do not want to touch that today for fear of moms everywhere raising their breast pumps in arms against us.  Yes, let's leave the breastfeeding battle alone for today.)

Two weeks ago, my time was up.  My principal was arranging the classes for next year, deciding who he needed to hire, what teacher was going to teach what classes.  My window was quickly closing.

I waited until the last possible minute and then I wandered into his office after lunch one day to talk with him about it- still not totally sure what my answer was.

I sat down in a comfortable chair across his desk and waited quietly for him to finish an email.  He finished, and turned to me while interlocking his fingers.

"What can I do for you, Bonnie?"

"Well... I told you in December that I was pregnant..."

"Yes.  Yes.  I think I recall."  (I always feel a need to remind men that I'm pregnant.  I don't know why.)

"So I'm just thinking about what I want to do for next year... is part time an option for me?"  I asked.  Some schools are really good about letting their teachers go part time, for other schools it is difficult and inconvenient.

"I think we could make that work," he said.  Just like that.

"I'd teach every other day?  Three classes?"  I didn't think it would be this easy.

He stared at a spreadsheet on his computer of all the English classes and all the English teachers.  He clicked a few boxes and scratched his goatee the way bosses do.

"We'd have to get rid of a few classes and combine here and there, but yes, we could let you go part time."

"That's what I want to do." I said quickly, as if the option were going to vanish into thin air if I didn't commit right this second.

"Fair enough.  I'll put you down as part time."

And that was it.  A decision I stressed about for five months, resolved in less than three minutes flat.  It's weird how the decision came together- like I was trying to form it on my own for so long, and then it just up and formed itself in that principal's office.  Decided on its own what it wanted to do.  I never came to a decision, the decision came to me.

As I left the principal's office I couldn't help feel incredible excitement and joy. I was at once stoked out of my mind and extremely calm.  I felt joy and I felt peace- emotions that I have learned to mean that I have made the right choice.  I no longer felt conflicted, I no longer felt angst.  Everything felt very clear and unmuddied to me. I texted Greg immediately, "I'm doing part time next year- it's a done deal!"

And so, the die has been cast, the decision made.  Starting in September you can find me every other day in my classroom, teaching Hamlet and thesis statements and The American Dream to rowdy high school seniors.  On the other days you can find me with my baby girl, taking long morning naps or going on walks to the park or meeting my mom for lunch.  Maybe, if you're lucky, I'll invite you over one lazy afternoon and we can have some cake.  And eat it too.

(P.S.  I'd love to hear your thoughts on working/ not working and how you made the choice (or intend to make the choice) to stay at home with your child or continue in the work place. Brooke and Tayler, two bloggy friends of mine who are both teachers and expecting their first babies this summer have written on the same topic. Come link up!)

Oh, and Tayler is beyond nice and is giving away $15 to Babies R Us for all you mommies to be.  Enter the giveaway below!

 a Rafflecopter giveaway

107 comments:

  1. I am so freakin jealous!!! what a perfect decision for a teacher...part time I've never even thought of that!! I'm not pregnant yet....but i do know i want to start a family soon...i don't know if i want to leave my safe cushion of a job (i'm in CA remember?) but i loved how my mom was SAHM and i would like to do the same....congrats on your fabulous decision!!

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    1. The safe cushion of a job definitely plays into it... I don't want to have to job search when I'm ready to reenter the work field in ten years or so!

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  2. Good for you on your decision! And thank you for sharing it!!!! It really is a tough one and I am grateful to read that there are women like you out there whose immediate reaction is NOT to quit because they worked so damn hard to get their degrees and establish themselves professionally. My husband and I are both active duty Naval Officers, and are finding that it is very 'scoffed at' for women to give up their careers for family....but as of late, I feel like all the things I will miss in my future baby's life won't be worth the time and stress I will feel at work. People can say what they want about child care and whatnot but I agree- it's gotta work for your situation. Also, your breastpump comment is funny. I can't wait to have children, but I'm still grossed out by this woman at my work who leaves her pump and bags and nipple butter out all the time for all to see. *gag*.

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    1. See, I live in a very religious state so at times I feel like it is scoffed at or looked down upon if you go back to work after having a child. Sometimes I just feel like it's a no win situation!

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  3. Oh the eternal debate! When I was pregnant I was at a JOB I LOVED, but traveled...a lot. I totally thought I could make it work until Emery was born. 6 weeks into maternity leave, I decided to leave my job. I found another job, that I didn't love as much, but was only 30 hours a week. I did that for about 2 years and was really happy with the decision. I got to work, which I loved (and needed to do for the $) and I got 1 day a week home with my girl. When she was 2 1/2 I went back to work full-time and a really family friendly organization and couldn't be happier. Now, 31 weeks pregnant with #2 I know that I am better equipped to work full time, particularly because my office is so family friendly. It's a TOTALLY PERSONAL decision and I don't think anyone can make the decision for someone else. Postpartum feelings are insane and everyone deals with them differently. I love my daughter, but for me, staying home full-time would make me bang my head against a wall. Her sitter for the first 2 1/2 years was worth every penny! Good luck! So glad you have this wonderful option!

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    1. Oh, the traveling would make it so tough! Loved what you said about it being totally personal... I agree! It's easy to try to make the decision for others, but it really varies so much from person to person.

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  4. It's funny that you mention those parents that seem to know everything the moment that they got pregnant, but I think the real truth is that they didn't know the answers to those questions either. It's very easy to SAY that you'll solely breastfeed, always stay home with your kids, and never co-sleep, but the truth is that once you start doing it, all plans go out the window!

    I'm excited that you have been offered such a great opportunity to do both! I think this decision is tough for a lot of families and I think it's such a blessing that your boss was able to work something out that worked well for both of you! :)

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    1. Yes, maybe that's just a facade those parents are putting up! :)

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  5. I have no idea what I'm going to do!!! I am hoping it will come together for me as it has come for you!

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    1. I hope so too! Best wishes. xoxo

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  6. I'm pregnant and struggled. Not because i loved my job, but because we liked being dual income. I've also owned a side business for about 2 years, so after pricing daycares we finally decided that if money was going to be tight either way we'd rather me be home with our son. So I'm going to be staying home, but working from home on my business and building that up to help bring in money. It's such a touch decision!

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    1. Yes, money will still definitely be tight for me to do part time and put the child in day care. The good thing is that my school has daycare downstairs so I can be close and the insurance for our family alone is pretty much worth it. I can't imagine what we'd have to pay for insurance elsewhere!

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  7. I'm so happy you were able to find an option that worked so well for you! When I have babies I will be working. I am the breadwinner so I guess it was a pretty simple decision to make. I would love to be able to just do part time, though.

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    1. I suppose that makes the decision easy for you then. I do hope, though, that you can do part time some day if that's what you wish. Let's cross our fingers for really big raises? :)

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  8. I'm pregnant with my third and a happy stay at home mum. I was one of those people that has known since before I even.met my husband that my goal was to be a stay at home mum. I have never had a career that I loved. I could never decide what kind of job I could fall in love with and never want to leave. I am so insanely jealous of my friends who have a hard time deciding because it means that they figured out what their passion in life was and have gone after it. I am so happy you have found a way to do what you love as well as enjoy being a mum as well!

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    1. Interesting perspective! I never thought about it that way... I'm jealous of my friends who know they want to stay home with their children and don't have all these stupid pressing urges to get out of the house constantly!

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  9. awesome! i love it when stuff just works out perfectly!!

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    1. Thank you! We'll see. I don't think I dare hope for "perfectly" but for now I am hoping the solution works for us :)

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  10. That's so exciting! And how great that your school is willing to make it work (and it seems like the principal didn't even bat an eye!) You can have a little bit of each and I bet you'll love it!

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    1. Yes, the principal was so great. I feel very blessed that he was as willing to work with me as he was!

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  11. Good for you!!! I can't imagine just quitting, but I also couldn't imagine life being the same. Seems like the perfect balance to me.

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  12. Bonnie, that is great! I love being a full-time sahm, but totally understand those who prefer to work or have to work. It is awesome that things worked out just the way you wanted then to.

    When I was pregnant with my first we started saving all of Ryan's income and living off of just mine to see if we could handle the one income. I was stressed out of my mind, but it worked and I'm glad I haven't gone back to work (except for taxes sometimes with Randy.)

    When you do have days off we should get together!

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    1. Great advice. We always kind of "thought" I might stay home, and wanted it to be an option, so we always tried to live off of one income [which also helped our savings account in the years we were both working]. Not only did it take off the sting once I did stay home, but it relieved our anxiety "should the worst happen" and one of us was out of work for a time or something.

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    2. Yes! I love this advice! That is part of what made the situation so hard to decide because Greg hasn't secured full time work yet so in many ways it feels like a leap of faith that he will be able to find something to support us as I go down to part time. Lots of prayers!

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  13. Do you read E, Myself, and I's blog? She is a fellow teacher who decided to go part-time after she had her son.

    I've always imagined I would work part-time once I have children. I still have a long time to figure this out, though!

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    1. I don't read her blog but I will have to start! Sounds like we have a lot of similarities. Thanks for the suggestion! :)

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  14. That is so exciting! Sometimes if you just ask, you are amazed by how things turn out. Also, I have been reading Lean In by Sheryl Sandberg, and she talks a lot about being a working vs stay at home mom. I would highly recommend reading it.

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    1. Thank you so much for the recommendation. I will definitely check it out!

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  15. Love this post. I'm so glad the part-time option worked out so well for you! Wish we had options like that at my school! You're awesome.

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    1. I loved your post Brooke! So beautiful! I am excited for you to be able to stay at home with your little one- I am sure you will love it!

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  16. This is awesome - such a great way for you to do both, and I'm glad you made a decision you feel is right for you. I was one of those moms that always knew I'd go back to work full-time, and it's the right decision for me - but isn't for so many others I know. It's so personal, and I'm so happy for you!

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    1. Thank you so much Jess. I think you are right- it varies so much for every person!

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  17. I love this post. I have a four month old and as a PhD student I don't have the option to go part time. Its been such a struggle for me because my heart yearns to stay home but I'm halfway through my program and have invested so much into my studies and career and know I'm where I was lead to be. I am jealous of stay at home moms and sometimes feel judged for leaving my baby. But I'm grateful for my mother who watches him during the day. Don't think I could do it without her!

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    1. Yes, that is such a blessing to have a mom who can watch your baby! My mom lives in the opposite direction so we'll have to put our little one in day care on the days that I work, but luckily my school has a day care so that makes it easier!

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  18. That will be so much fun for you!!! I never could do part time (my principal was very very against it. . . unless the teacher was a coach of a state champion team) but I would have jumped on it if I had the chance. Maybe someday I'll go back to that. One of my teacher friends worked part time and she said that there were only 8 week or so that she had to teach three days, mostly she only had to work two days a week! Two days!! You got it good girl.

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    1. So weird that your principal was so against it! It seems like for most high schools it is fairly easy to let a teacher go part time. In my case one teacher was switching over some classes to history so it just worked out that we would need to hire one full time teacher.

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  19. That's amazing that you have that option to work part time, you really can have your cake and eat it too!

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  20. I am so glad this turned out to be easy for you! I'm sure it was weighing on your mind big time! Now you can spend plenty of time with your precious bundle of joy and work part time, still doing what you love!

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    1. That's the idea! :) We'll see how well it pans out.

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  21. I struggled with the decision to teach part-time after my boy was born. My principal offered me a way to teach only on A days, but I realized that one week would be MWF, and the next TTH, and that it would be impossible to have my mom coordinate her working schedule so she could watch my son too. We couldn't afford daycare, so I quit when he was three months old. I'm so happy you have found a way to work it out! I miss teaching so much.

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    1. Aubrey it's so good to hear from you! Yes, it is annoying that it's not always a constant MWF, that would be MUCH easier. Daycare ends up being a big expense, but my high school offers day care which is much cheaper than most and she will be so close so that is about the only thing that makes it doable- I don't know if I could manage otherwise.

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  22. I found your blog through Brooke's. I'm due with my first in jut 5.5 weeks and I'm going to be staying home with my baby. Although I was nervous to leave work and rely soly on my husband's income I think this is the best for my baby and me right now. I'm glad you found a solution that will work for you! When are you due?

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    1. So glad to have you! Thanks so much for your comment and I'm so glad you found a solution that works for you. I'm due in July :)

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  23. As a SAHM (going on a year now) I'm totally jealous of your decision. Part time will be such a fantastic way to spend your time. I actually really, truly wish I had a desire to teach, because it would solve my stay-at-home woes. Don't get me wrong, I do love it, but I miss interacting with people my own age and doing what I love. Three days a week will be such a great balance. Congrats!

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    1. Yes, I think that would be the hardest part for me about staying at home is not having that constant interaction with people my own age!

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  24. Oh I am so jealous!! That sounds like the perfect scenario. I am a working mom who is extremely jealous of stay at home moms. In my case, I don't have the option of staying at home since my husband is getting his PhD. We need my income. But in a perfect scenario, part time is the bee's knees.

    I agree with you that the working mom vs. SAHM debate is a touchy subject. Personally, I hate the argument that staying home is what is best for the baby because it implies that by working I am NOT doing what is best for my baby. There pros and cons for being at home and at daycare. What is BEST for the baby is that they are loved and taken care of. When my baby is home with me, I am doing that. And when he is at daycare, I know they are doing that. End of story.

    Of dang I just added to the debate. My bad.

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    1. "Part time is the bee's knees." I hope so! And yes, the debate is endless and I agree, I hate that it is implied that you are not doing what's best for the child if you choose to spend some time outside the home. But maybe that's just me being defensive?

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  25. That sounds like a perfect solution! We live in San Francisco and there is no way we could ever afford to have me quit my job, so in a way, a feel lucky that it's already decided for me. Sometimes too many choices just makes my head swim. I just know I'll work, and because living in a cardboard box wouldn't be the best for our baby, me working is what will be the best.

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    1. I agree! Sometimes I hate the choices and just wish that it could already be decided for me!

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  26. I've been a partime teacher for 3.5 years ever since my first son was born. It is kind of like the best of both worlds some days...and other days it feels like I get to be a part of neither world. One or two days a week with my kids doesn't feel like enough, but 3 days a week of teaching doesn't feel like I am part of the teaching staff, and the school treats me differently.

    So...you'll have to try it out and see if it works for you, and not be afraid to just quit one or the other. For me, after almost 4 years, I am going to try and be a full time SAHM. We'll see if I go crazy missing the classroom!

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    1. Interesting point you bring up and I have worried about that. I have already felt a bit of a sense of loss when teachers talk about schedules and the board next year... as if I'm not totally in it anymore. My department head said something like, "Bonnie's leaving us next year to go part time," and my gut reaction was to be offended- I'm not leaving! Don't kick me out the door!

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  27. When you first mentioned this in passing I was kind of like ok cool moving on, but it actually made me think. I've always wanted to stay home. Since I obviously have no kids I can't be a stay at home mom, but this has inspired me to write about something similar but obviously different. How exciting you get to stay home and keep teaching! You better invite me over for cake:)

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    1. Yes you can come have cake! I wouldn't be surprised if it ends up being more difficult for you to decide than you imagine. you have devoted so much to your career and given so much to it, it's hard to just say goodbye to all that. For me, it feels like it's part of my identity.

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  28. For me there was no decision to be made. In order to financially make it I had to go back to work. At first it was extremely hard to leave my baby at daycare but he loves it there and I love my time to be the person I worked so hard to become. I'm eating my cake!

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  29. I stayed home for the first 5 months and then went part time. It was the best decision for us and I loved being home with my girls and also talking to adults from time to time. My kids are very well adjusted and do awesome in school so I feel like I didn't fail them too badly.

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    1. That sounds ideal! I won't get to stay home 5 months... I'll only have 6 weeks and I think that initial leaving when she is so little will be the toughest.

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  30. Good for you!!! When I had my daughter, I went back to work and I hated it. I knew that I needed to be at home. So when I got pregnant with my son, we made it a priority for me to stay home. Just one month before I had him, I quit my job. I think I would work part time if I found something I really loved to do just to get out of the house once in a while and have some adult interaction but I'm so glad I quite the job that I really didn't like at all. I think every Mom has to make this decision based on what's best for their family. When I worked, I was so happy to go home and spend time with my daughter. I loved how excited she was when I walked through the door. But now that I am a stay at home Mom, I love that I spend my time with them. I love that I won't miss anymore first moments and I love that I'm their biggest influence. It was great either way and I really just think you have to do what's best for you and your family. The mommy wars that are going on are really quite ridiculous!

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    1. And I think you bring up a great point... sometimes you have to just try it out. For me, having a student teacher these past three months I have realized how much I miss teaching and I'm so excited to get my classes back next week- it has made it clearer in my mind that I couldn't leave this for good.

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  31. Good for you! Maybe you should add this to the mommy wars that happen waaaaay too often. Glad you worked out the best decision for you and your fam and I hope I have this option one day when I start my own :)

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    1. Oh, the mommy wars. Don't even get me started.

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  32. I'm much older than you, and probably most of your readers. I have 4 grandchildren! I have worked full time, and stayed home full time in the course of having 4 children. Various times, various scenarios. (Although I was never really a 'stay at home Mom', as I had a busy career and chose to freelance, or work at home about half of the cumulative time I had children at home. Although I LOVE love love what I do, and have an awesome career, it was always hard for me to leave my children and be away from them for so much of my day. As my kids got older & hit adolescence, I found that my working created so many opportunities for them to get into trouble! So, it's not like staying home when they are little & working when they hit school age is the perfect ideal either. They always seem to need Mom. But it certainly sounds like you have hit on the perfect solution for you. Part time would be an awesome option for many working Moms, if they can manage it financially. Part of the problem of staying home, if you have certain types of careers, is that you lose your skills and value to your employers by taking years off. That certainly would solve that problem. Hope everything works out for you... I have a feeling it will!

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    1. Such an interesting point, Stefanie! I do think it's kind of natural to think that as soon as the kids are in school you can just go back to work, but I have heard other parents say similar things- they still need your time when they're not at home from 8-3. We will give the part time solution a go for a year and the reevaluate. I am hoping it works. :) Thank you for your sweet comment!

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  33. Such a hard decision. Ugh. Here is the first post I wrote when I made my initial decision: http://kelseylynae.blogspot.com/2012/03/decision-learning-to-imitate-trees.html

    How it is still hard at certain times to not be known as a teacher:
    http://kelseylynae.blogspot.com/2013/08/i-feel-it.html

    Different moments of clarity and reassurances I've had along the way when I feel what I do isn't "important":
    http://kelseylynae.blogspot.com/2012/09/abundance.html

    How I answer the annoying question stay at home mom's get asked all the time, "But what do you DO all day?"
    http://kelseylynae.blogspot.com/2013/05/my-answer-to-silly-question.html

    And then there is this post, where I review a book titled "In Praise of Stay at Home Moms" complete with a disclaimer at the beginning because I don't want working moms to hate me :/:
    http://kelseylynae.blogspot.com/2013/02/the-house-isnt-perfect-and-your.html

    It's still hard some days. Some days going to school and teaching would be easier. Some days going to school and teaching would absolutely kill me. It's taken awhile, but I'm finally at peace with where I am, especially with number two on the way [literally… like my pelvic bones are about to snap because her arrival is so near]. I've always said though that if teaching part time were an option for me I would have totally jumped on it, so I'm so happy you're going to be able to do that! Hooray! [Teaching in a small town has its downsides, I guess…but I am still coaching so I guess that's my "part time" foot in the door with the kiddos. :)] I'm glad the decision was clear for you when the time came!

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    1. I cannot wait to read all these links! I definitely feel like you understand where I am coming from- the passion to teach juggled with the desire to be a good mom. Religion definitely plays in to it- I know the religious culture I am a part of firmly believes it's best to stay home with the child so I worry that in some ways I am rebelling against that? I don't think I am and hope that overall everyone in the family will be happier with this arrangement, but there is definitely still doubt.

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  34. Before I got pregnant I always thought I would be a full time working mom. I went to college and I was going to use that degree for its intended purpose. For the majority of my son's first year I worked full time. It was so hard! I would often find myself missing him terribly by mid-morning, spending the rest of the day receiving reassuring e-mails from my husband encouraging me that I was a great mom whether I was with him all day or not. However, the breaking point was when I realized that my son was spending more waking hours with the babysitter than his parents. We have the best babysitter and are so blessed to have her, but it is not the life I wanted.
    The best decision I ever made was moving to part-time. I work every other day and find it to be the best situation for our family. I spend precious hours with my little man playing outside and tickling his cute belly without rushing through his childhood driven by tasks and a limited schedule; then the next day I go to work and enjoy time with other adults, putting on something other than mom clothes and wearing earrings his little fingers can’t reach while I’m working as he happily plays with other children at the baby sitter and learns the importance of sharing with other little beings his own size and find his independence from momma.
    I have noticed that I now appreciate my family so much more because I don't feel the self-inflicted pressure of spending every second with my son while awake, spending quality time with my husband, cooking dinner every night while keeping the house as clean as my mom always somehow managed. It's not right for everyone, but I have certainly found my niche.

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    1. Thanks so much for this comment Stephanie! I am hoping I feel the same about my situation. And such an interesting point you bring up about feeling pressure if you stay at home to cook dinner, keep house clean, be perfect at home. I think a lot of SAHMs feel this way and it would definitely be hard for me to feel that pressure.

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  35. I didn't read the other comments, but I feel I should chime in and say that people might think they have everything figured out as soon as they are pregnant, but nobody has anything figured out when it comes to parenthood. You just need to do what works best for your family and keeps you sane, and it will all work out in the end. If you think you have something all figured out, your child will disagree and show you that you don't know what you're doing. Best to just roll with the punches. :)

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    1. Krissy thanks for your comment! It's so good to hear from you! And yes, I hope that I am not actually as clueless as I feel, maybe just more willing to admit it?

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  36. This sounds like the best choice for you!!! I thought I was going to work but when it came time to leave that small sweet little baby...I simple could NOT do it.. I was lucky enough to also have to have the option to not work...I know most don't. Part time is really the best of both worlds!

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    1. Yes, I have heard many people say something similar. When it actually comes down to leaving the baby it is so tough. Hopefully I can do it without it pulling at my heartstrings too much.

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  37. yay I am glad that everything worked out!! You will still get to teach and you';; get to sped lots of time with your girl! Sounds like the perfect solution to a stressful situation.

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    1. I hope so! Thanks for your comment!

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  38. Glad you found a solution that's right for you… hope it works out… but I did have to laugh out loud at the part where you envision days home with the child… "long morning naps" and "lazy afternoons" It cracks me up that that's what people without kids think it's like staying home with kids. You're going to be surprised at how much work a newborn is. Even if she's a good/happy baby, it's still a lot of work! But you'll love it...

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    1. Yes, I might be in for quite a wake up call!

      And I am hoping I at least get some naps! With so many people insisting that I will be awake all night, if the baby doesn't sleep sometimes during the days then I'm in for a world of hurt!

      Love you and can't wait to see you! Only two more months!

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  39. I think its great that you can go part time and hopefully when or if you decide to go full time it will be an easy! They really should do something about the Maternity and Paternity laws in the US, it would make things a lot easier or parents.

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    1. I hope so! I definitely don't want to close off the option of doing full time in the future.

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  40. I think it's so cool that we have decided to do the same thing! Only my half time will be every day.
    Can't wait to see you tomorrow!

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    1. Yes! Great minds think alike! :)

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  41. I'm not a teacher or a mother yet, but I do know that one day I'll be both and I'll have to face this decision as well! I hope to find someone as supportive of me as Greg is of you when the time comes, cause I can only imagine how much easier it was to decide knowing that he was 100% with you either way.

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    1. Thank you Kylie, that is such a sweet thing to say. I will definitely pass the message on to Greg!

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  42. OMGGGGG I am so incredibly jealous! I think part time would be the perfect compromise but I don't think it's an option for me since I'm the only art teacher for the elementary school. That is AWESOME! You really do get the best of both worlds. Good for you! xoxo

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    1. Thank you! And yes, the part time option does seem to be much more complicated if you are teaching elementary.

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  43. Wow, that was easier than I thought it would be! I am not even a mom, and I would consider staying home because I love to blog, I love to craft, and I love my pets, but I feel like since I don't have kinds, people my look at me funny if I ever decided to stay home before we were pregnant.

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    1. I wish I had more of your disposition. Three hours in the house and I start to go craaaaaazy.

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  44. I feel like I could have written your post 2-3 years ago! After my baby girl was born, I went back to work full-time searching for a closer part-time job that still kept me in a similar environment, doing the same job on the same 'level'. I thought it was a long shot, but miraculously, I found my current job. I get to work 3 days per week and stay home with my daughter 4 days - best balance ever! You will not regret your decision, the best of both worlds! It's wonderful how easily it happened for you :)

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    1. That does sound like an amazing balance! I will work 2 or 3 days a week, depending on the schedule of the school. I am hoping it works out for me as well as I am envisioning...

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  45. I don't even want to allow myself to go there for making a decision on working when I am pregnant. You know I am a full time teacher and my husband and I are planning on getting pregnant the next couple of years. I can't imagine leaving my little babies for my babies. Haha. I am not much help in this decision, except to say that whatever choice you make is awesome and I definitely feel your pain.

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    1. Thanks Sierra! And yes, leaving babies for babies is a great way to put it. I want all the babies!

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  46. i was teaching 3rd grade when i got pregnant with my son, and the decision was SO HARD. especially because my principal really wanted me to stay, and was willing to make any kind of accommodations for me. part time (sharing a class) was very tempting because we needed the money and i did not want to leave teaching. but in the end it all came down to i had no one to watch our baby while i was at work. no family in the area, and paying someone would eat up too much of my salary. being a SAHM is a very tough transition, but it was the right one for me. i am inherently lazy and love not having to go to work in the mornings :) i miss teaching a lot, but i love being able to spend every day with my son!

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    1. I do have to say that the best part for me about not going to work would definitely be not having to get up and go first thing in the morning. I hate my 6:30 alarm! And yes, I am lucky to have day care at my school that is very affordable, so it makes the transition that much easier.

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  47. Congrats! How fun to have both of these wonderful things in your life. I chose SAHM, but I'm considering integrating some at-home work (I do computers). It was a no-brainer for me and my husband- we both wanted me home.
    And I'm just gonna throw in my two cents here -- if ever want to sleep after the baby is born, come up with a sleep plan now and start it THE DAY you get home, and never stop. I promise you will not regret it. (I recommend The Baby Whisper by Tracy Hogg if you don't know where to start)

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    1. Thank you Summer! I will have to check it out! I'm currently reading Baby Wise but I know people are very love it or hate it with that book. I have yet to really form my own opinion on it but I definitely know that getting my baby to sleep is an absolute priority.

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  48. All I ever wanted was to be a mom. With every word and action I try to instill kindness, generosity, and gentleness into my girls, and I know no one on this earth would be able to do a better job with them than me! We have made a lot of financial sacrifices as a family to make it possible for me to stay at home with our girls. Still, there is nowhere else I would rather be. To me, that's the key. Life is meant to be joyful-and if staying at home doesn't make you ultimately happy, then don't!

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    1. Bristyl it's so fun to have you comment on here! Great point you made about bringing what ultimately brings you the most joy- hopefully doing a little bit of both will help me to not feel like I am missing out too much on either. (The flip side is it could make me feel like I am missing out on both...)

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  49. Oh hun! This is just what I needed...I have been debating and going back forth too. I have no idea what I am going to do, but hope I will figure it out once baby Bowers gets here. Thank you for sharing! It is great to know I am not the only one going through this!

    As for the fabulous giveaway...I would love to put the giftcard towards things on my registry! Baby Bowers will be here in a few weeks and this would help so much! Crossing my fingers! xo

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    1. You are welcome! That's the beauty of the blogging world- to share stories and connect with people who understand what you're going through!

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  50. I think that sounds like a happy medium! I didn't work, but now I do some at-home stuff (work as a doula and It Works distributor). It's been nice to work, actually.

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    1. Perfect! I do think if I decide to stay at home full time I will have to find some other hobbies and interests to keep me busy and constantly interacting with others.

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  51. It sounds like you found the perfect solution! I've been going back and forth on this issue too. I had pretty much settled on staying home for a few years with my baby due in August, but now as time goes on I've begun to panic that I'll miss working. I'll guess I'll just have to wait and see when the baby comes!

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    1. you are lucky you can decide when the baby comes! For me I had to commit one way or the other before they make the schedules for next year. I guess technically I could still bail on them last minute, but I would feel way too bad doing that.

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  52. What a great solution. When I had my first I negotiated with my boss to let me work 4 nine hours days instead of my traditional 5 days. It meant a slight decrease in hours and salary but basically kept me full time. I never thought I would be interested in being a strictly stay at home mom. I didn't have my first until I was 40 so I had a career for almost 20 years. My oldest is turning 2 and my baby is 6 months and I find it harder and harder to leave them and come to work. I feel like I am missing out on too much of their lives. When I get home at night it is a rush to do dinner, baths, etc. and doesn't feel like a lot of fun. Financially it would be a significant stretch if I were to stay home and honestly, I don't know that I really could handle being home full time. This is turning into a long "Amen" that there are no easy decisions, and even once one has been made, I think it continues to be an evolution based on schedules, kids, need, child care availability, etc. Congratulations on the baby. She will make all the stress of schedules completely worth it.

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  53. I am so happy that you were able to come to a decision that works for you and the school. I worked full time with my first and then when my second came along I became a stay at home mom. I enjoyed the time working and would love to go back. My husband and I had opposite schedules so it worked out that he watched our daughter while I worked. It was a good situation but wasn't going to work with a 2 year old and a newborn. I have never regretted my decision and would love to go back if I could part time once number 4 goes to kindergarten.

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    1. i am hear to give testimony of how i got back my husband, we got married for more than 9 years and have gotten two kids. thing were going well with us and we are always happy. until one day my husband started to behave in a way i could not understand, i was very confused by the way he treat me and the kids. later that month he did not come home again and he called me that he want a divorce, i asked him what have i done wrong to deserve this from him, all he was saying is that he want a divorce that he hate me and do not want to see me again in his life, i was mad and also frustrated do not know what to do,i was sick for more than 2 weeks because of the divorce. i love him so much he was everything to me without him my life is incomplete. i told my sister and she told me to contact a spell caster, i never believe in all this spell casting of a thing. i just want to try if something will come out of it. i contacted traditional spell hospital for the return of my husband to me, they told me that my husband have been taken by another woman, that she cast a spell on him that is why he hate me and also want us to divorce. then they told me that they have to cast a spell on him that will make him return to me and the kids, they casted the spell and after 1 week my husband called me and he told me that i should forgive him, he started to apologize on phone and said that he still live me that he did not know what happen to him that he left me. it was the spell that he traditional spell hospital casted on him that make him comeback to me today,me and my family are now happy again today. thank you traditional spell hospital for what you have done for me i would have been nothing today if not for your great spell. i want you my friends who are passing through all this kind of love problem of getting back their husband, wife , or ex boyfriend and girlfriend to contact traditionalspellhospital@gmail.com. and you will see that your problem will be solved without any delay.

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  54. I did not expect to miss teaching as much as I do. I do miss the routine, the getting dressed, having funny kid stories. I am SO glad I got to stay home this year with Addilyn but do miss it. I SOOO wish part time was an option at my school and I am hoping that some time soon it will be. I feel like that would be such a good balance!

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