Work/Life Balance is one of those key terms that keeps buzzing around corporations these days. And it’s definitely something that I hear often where I work.
I am grateful to work at a place that allows me to occasionally work from home. This is great for me, even though I still have to take Colt to daycare. It means I can sleep in a little longer, skip the shower, and just throw on jeans and a hoodie when I get up. I can also do things like run the dishwasher and throw a load of laundry in. And once I even let something cook in the crockpot for dinner.
Unfortunately, the ability to work from home means that I pretty regularly log back in at night after Colt goes to bed. Though, I have to say I do this less frequently than before he was born.
Today I was “reprimanded” in a way for letting a client know that a rescheduled meeting was technically outside my working hours, but that I would try to attend. My boss basically called it a lesson in professionalism. And I get it. Just because my official day has come to an end, I should have stated it differently. I’m an honest person and I responded with an honest answer. I attended the meeting and all was well.
But that was my half hour.
I wake up at 6am. I am dropping Colt at daycare by no later than 7:15. I’m at work by 7:30,and there for the next 9 hours. Then I fight traffic to pick Colt up and it’s 5:30 by the time we’re home. It’s dinner, playtime, baths and bed by 8pm. That leaves me 2-3 hours for me. And that includes eating, showering and if I’m lucky, logging back into work.
That’s right, I’m spending 9 hours a day at work, plus 1 to 2 more a night, at least once a week. And I’m spending 4 hours with my son.
4 hours that also includes arguments with someone who can’t talk yet. We don’t stand in chairs, don’t throw food on the floor, yes you need to wear pajamas, yes it’s time for bed, and no 3am is not a good time for snuggles.
I understand now why people choose to be stay at home parents. But it’s also very obvious why I do work. And it’s because I’m lousy at arguing with tiny people who can’t talk yet.
So where exactly is this balance and how does one make that work?
Edit: I should also point out that I get a lot of time off. It’s just remembering and figuring out when I can take it.
Edit 2: I am also extremely grateful that I have a parenting partner in my husband that I can count on to help with Colt in the evenings and weekends.