We’re all in this together

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Reach for the top. That’s what we are all told as we grow up. All those teenagers waiting for their exam results (not looking forward to that phase, oh no) are hoping for great grades, many wanting to go on to university and challenging careers. I did. I worked hard, went to a prestigious uni and have a good job. And yet.

I’m writing this blog on the first train to London. It’s 6am. I saw Elder for 10mins yesterday. I won’t see him at all today. Nor Little One. This is not a moan (that was yesterday – it got better) I’m lucky in so many ways, but I often wonder whether shooting for a career ASAP is the best thing. I just assumed it was.

Frankly, having the boys has all but killed my career with the Parkinson’s delivering the death blow. A little galling considering the effort I put into it. I could go on about maternity rights and equal opportunities but the fundamental truth is you can’t have it all. And we shouldn’t pretend you can. You only end up exhausted and stressed. Well I do.

Before the female population lynch me I have to go on to ask why we assume the responsibility for family care lies with the mother? We should be showing the boys that they can be involved fathers rather than only seeing their kids at the weekend. I’m lucky. I only do this trail into Town twice a week. I’m surrounded by guys in pinstripes who do it daily. That can’t be good can it? It’s almost 3hrs each way!!

Other Half said last night how much he enjoys having the boys on my ‘big London’ days. The proverbial silver lining. We are in this parenting lark together aren’t we? We should be raising the next generation to take that for granted.

Another silver lining. Just to get back to the important things in life. I have made progress on my lace crochet scarf. I think it’s going to be quite cool. And I’ve started making a Chanel style bag as featured in this months Knitting mag. Moss stitch. Nooooooooooooooo !

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5 thoughts on “We’re all in this together

  1. Shooting for a career was the best thing. I did the same, and the exhausting middle years, trying to be mum, housewife-superstar AND running my own business. I seemed to be exhausted, all the time, for about 15 years!

    Looking back I now come to relish the other things a uni education did for me. It opened my mind, and made me get so much more enjoyment out of life. Now I’m a ‘third-ager’, I see it now with retired colleagues who didn’t aim for a career – they seem so shut down, and narrow. And I see the opposite in my beautiful daughter, who we gave the best education we could. She’s in a good career, BUT I’ve come to realise that’s not the bit that’s important. She’s confident, outgoing, can enjoy life and is ready to get out there and grab it! She can see life’s challenges clearly, and without the nagging doubts and clouded, narrow thinking that can beset us.

    It’s been a bit of a revelation to me to look back and realise that – yeah – the career was good, but that wasn’t even half of it.

    Keep going! You’re doing great.

    PS. Hubby and I also shared the work and the child-raising. It was really good, but deserves another post!

    1. You should do a post about it – it sounds like I could learn a thing or two.interesting you see it from such a different perspective but a very reassuring one. Thankyou 🙂

  2. I think women were sold a bit of a lie when they were told they could have it all because they have equality. Men don’t have it all, they never did because they never had the opportunities for family time that women had, whether they liked it or not. Now things have evened up a bit it is obvious that you can have a little bit of everything, or you can have a lot of something (time at home or a career or whatever it is you want to do) but you can’t have all of everything – there just aren’t enough hours in the day and somewhere there will be an opportunity cost – something you have had to give up or hand over because there simply not enough hours in the day, be that handing over childcare to somebody else whilst you work or giving up on some of your career aspirations. The great thing is that whilst more and more women are doing a little bit of everything, so are men – it makes the whole balancing act much easier. There is still a way to go though. Our husbands are much more hands on with the children than their fathers but I reckon our sons will get even closer to a 50:50 split in all things. Or whatever works for their family and makes them happy. That would be true equality.

    And to think I only came to your blog to look at your ric racing. 😉

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