Daryn Kagan

Mom figures out how to have it all

My friend, Lori, is nuts.

Some would say.

Who walks away from a job she worked more than 20 years to get?

A job she loves.

A job with perks.

Who does that?

A certain kind of woman.

Also known as,

A mom.

“My kids are now 9 and 5, precious ages I don’t want to miss,” she shared this week on Facebook.

Trading in 9-5 for her kids 9 and 5.

Except Lori’s job wasn’t 9-5.

Whose is these days?

Which led to Lori’s choice.

And yet, with one hand on the doorknob, Lori looked over her shoulder, giving nod to her career.

“I’m looking forward to the opportunities that await,” she added.

“There will be opportunities,” I assured her.

Opportunity to spend time with your kids in the car as you usher them from place to place.

Opportunity to wonder if you’re simply a glorified Uber driver when one child will pop up with a precious question or conversation from the backseat.

There’s the opportunity to wear a new uniform.

Each day, picking which T-shirt you bought on sale from Old Navy.

If it’s clean and has no stains, this will be a bonus.

If it doesn’t,

Then, oh well.

The opportunity to be you, not professional you.

Just you.

And find out who your real friends are.

The opportunity to make dinner for your family,

Which will mean some Hallmark card moments,

And some where your kids tell you they wish they could just eat fast food every night.

It’s not all going to be pretty.

But it’s going to be.

A chapter,

You will not regret.

A chapter that,

Just like this current, over demanding job,

Will end.

I know because I see my own wrapping up.

With one kid a senior, the other a junior in high school, this chapter is quickly coming to a close.

I feel career engine revving up.

So, I’m dipping toes.

Talking to my network about what opportunities are out there.

Not a single one so far involves wearing my hair up in a scrunchie all day.

This is unfortunate.

And a reminder that you can have it all.

Just not all at the same time.

Some bemoan this.

I revel in it.

I would no more want to have it all at the same then I would want to shove an entire holiday dinner in my mouth all at once.

Salmon dip on a cracker.

Roast beef in creamy horseradish sauce.

Too many Christmas cookies.

Separately, this once a year feast is delicious.

All at the same time would ruin it.

Truth is, this isn’t just about one mom downsizing her career.

It’s any choice.

The thing your younger self would tell you you’re crazy to give up.

Maybe crazy is just another way of saying opportunity.

To not grab it,

To see it as the season of your life that is right now,

Well, that,

In my opinion,

Would simply be nuts.