“Never say never.” ~ Charles Dickens
I love this line, because it is oh so true. Whenever I hear someone adamantly tell someone else how they would NEVER do something, I chuckle to myself. You really can’t ever say never, as you do not know what life has in store (unless you are psychic, in which case, please call me, I have some questions) and you don’t know what circumstances you will be in when that event may happen.
This concept has been very top of mind for me as of late, and it really hit home as I spoke to my sister the other day. As we were catching up, she dramatically informed me she was going to do something she said she would NEVER do (drum roll please….dun dun dah!!!!!) yes, you guessed it, get a fake Christmas Tree. Now my sister D, is very emphatic whenever she professes she will or will not do something, now, in the future or ever. In this case, she had said all of our lives, that she would NEVER get a fake tree. Now, living in PA, where the trees must travel across country and lose not only their smell, but also a great deal of moisture in their journey, she has determined, that it’s just no longer worth it. A fake tree it shall be.
This led me to think about a very hot topic of what many of us moms talk about pre-and-during-preganancy, which is, whether or not to work out of the home. I laugh now as people tell me before and during their pregnancy that they would NEVER want to work after they have a baby, while others say I would NEVER want to stay home and often it’s exactly these women who flip flop as soon as their precious mini arrives. Circumstances change, emotions change, you can never truly know something until you walk a mile in someone’s shoes or your own.
In my own experience this is currently weighing heavy on mind. I have always worked. I have had a successful career in Entertainment. By all accounts I am good at what I do, and I NEVER thought I would consider staying or working from home. Now, with twins who came into this world in circumstances I could not and would not have imagined, and with E being diagnosed with Cerebral Palsy, every fiber of my beings screams to do what’s best for her, for them, for me, but really for her. If I stayed home, would she do better? Improve faster? We would have to cut back on our nanny which would mean that I would then have them both all the time, but that also means less meaningful one on one time that I sometimes have now, where Nana H can take Q and I can work with E.
With each little victory, as we had today, when I was working from home and I took a time out to do some PT, I feel the tug. Today, in what by all accounts was an “ordinary moment,” not unlike one of my very first posts (When Ordinary Became Extraordinary), E did something extraordinary.
With some assistance from me, E transitioned herself into an all-fours position (hands and knees). When she got there, her instinct is to lurch for whatever she wants or to pick her hands up and put them to her mouth which then promptly sends her nose-diving onto the rug. Additionally, with her movement disorder issues she has a very challenging time with balance, so this position often ends with a collapse to one side or the other. This time however, while she wanted to lurch, I steadied her, opened both hands from their fists, and said “hands down.” And there she was on all-fours. I then said one our therapy terms, “rocking, rocking, rocking,” which is what many children do before they actually learn to crawl, and there she was rocking on all fours. I let go ever so gently and there she was on her own, rocking for about 4-5 seconds. Nana H looked on excitedly while my heart exploded with joy. These little victories chip away at my decisions that I have made. My circumstances are different now.
My current working role gives me flexibility for which I am so grateful. Before children, I NEVER said, I would NEVER not work or rather WORK as a Stay at home mom ( please know I have mad respect for all you lovelies who are with your minis all day, it’s so so so much work, a different kind of work, harder work in so many ways). I had the conversation with myself that I had worked so hard to get here, that I am good at what I do, that I enjoy what I do, but then there is the victory in seeing E rock on all 4s or having Q say a word he has never said before as I read him a story for the umpteenth time (that’s a lot of times:)) and the victory I feel when my babies look at me as if I am their greatest hero and their greatest love all rolled into one.
I do not know where this path leads. Circumstances always play a part and with all E’s therapies and medical appointments our lives are quite expensive and will only get more so as they get older. Pre-school, special therapy programs, potential equipment, all loom large over our heads. How to best handle Q’s need to for some social interaction and structure, while E’s needs are more that of a 9 month old baby. Not wanting to separate them, wanting the same opportunities for them both. Decisions I thought I would NEVER have to make, or rather NEVER knew I would have to make.
For now, I will just continue to follow my heart and my intuition. It has always led me in the right direction and so I follow. Not blindly, but with consideration. The anticipation of what might be either way, gives me hope and I also know that my faith will carry us through this just as it has the past 3 years.
Have any of you struggled with or are any of you struggling with decisions you care to share anonymously or by name? Again, this is not relegated to my experiences as the emotions that propel us and prevent us are all the same in many scenarios. By working through them with others, we can often find the spark of inspiration that can help us lean in the “right direction for us” and make today ‘anewfavoriteday.
9 thoughts on ““Never say NEVER because you just never know.””
Wonderful post. Every thing you wrote here is so true. Great piece of writing.
Thanks so much…I really appreciate your thoughts and compliment. I hope you have a great day, thanks for starting mine off on the right foot!
Before my first was born, I was a Sr. Marketing Manager at a Fortune 100 company. I LOVED my job–and the money was really nice, too. I remember hearing the rumors swirling in my department that I wasn’t returning after I my leave. Something I had never uttered, but I took the bull-by-the-horns and approached my boss to let him know that I was most certainly returning. Surprisingly (because he was a very demanding boss) he looked at me and said, “You have no idea how you will feel once they place that baby in your arms. Give yourself permission to withhold your decision until that day.” I walked out, grateful for his words, and certain I would return to the job I loved.
I was on leave for 4 months (on bed rest my last month of pregnancy) and mentally prepared to return to work during the last month of my leave. I did return to my job and surprised myself when I turned in my resignation 2 weeks later. My boss had accepted a new position while I was on leave and his replacement rejected the reduced travel terms I had negotiated before I went out on leave. Though I could have managed to get home every evening, I would have been gone 14 or 15 hours a day to make that happen. I knew I could do it, but, at the same time, just knew I couldn’t do it.
While on leave, I had done some consulting from home and that is what I have continued to do ever since. This past August marked my 17th year in business. It has allowed me to stay home with my girls since almost day one. My husband even stayed home with them/us for 3 years. When my older daughter was in the 6th grade, we chose to back-burner my career so I could focus on homeschooling our girls. (We joke that “when the grammar got tough, the tough went back to work.”) I still take occasional projects with long-time clients, but the bulk of my energy is dedicated to schooling my girls.Now that they are older, I am evaluating new options.With the opportunity to start with a clean slate, I’m still sorting out where I want to go from here.
So, there’s my (long) story…I “never” saw myself as a “SAHM”, but I’ve never regretted my decision, either.
Great post–and good luck as you continue to listen to your intuition. Mine hasn’t failed me yet.
I am so so so glad you shared this with me. As you can see I am struggling but like you say your intuition hasn’t led you astray. I am amazed that you have home-schooled you children for so many reasons. It helps to see other’s paths and the choices they have made. It doesn’t mean that we will do exactly as they have done, but it helps in creating our choices, to see all the angels and to help shape what we think is best for us. I am so grateful you too the time to give me this gift…thank you! ❤
Yeah for E!!!! I work from home too and feel like it’s been the best opportunity for all of us. I wish I could not work at all, but since I must, this is a good compromise. I’m so happy for you!! Never say never! 😉
That’s so great to hear and very encouraging. Thank you for celebrating our mini milestones with us…:)
I trully believe you need to rule by gut feel and intuition. I knew i never wanted to be a SAHM because of similiar reasons as you. Also i need to have a separate independance financially from my husband aftet see my mom struggle to raise 3 kids after her husband left her with not even a HS diploma. I vowed to never be that dependant or vulnerable. As life certainly gave me a few curve balls and brought these little people in my life i for the first time ranted to stay at home. I needed to recharge personally from work stress and particularly spend some much needed time with R on his special needs journey. So i gave it all for a sabattical the last year and refocused. I loved being home with my boys. I loved being there for their needs and endless appointments. Then things changed at home and i recently was able to go back to work. Now my husband is hime now. I have found with two special needs kids its worked for one of us to be home and for the last three years one of us has been.
I missed work but was needed at home and felt pulled. What we have always done is adjust as our personal needs adjusted and the needs of the kids. As they grow their needs change also. Some higher demand on us and less. So thats why i choose intuition 😉 love to talk further xoxo
Beautiful post and I’m so proud of the effort E is making too. You have an important decision to make and you alone will know what the right action will be… Blessings and light to you and your family. 😉