Wednesday, March 6, 2013

Work Home and Family - Saying No When You Want to Say Yes

Being a mom is hard.  

I don't care if you are a full time wife and mommy, a work from home mommy, a going to school mommy or some type of working outside the home mommy - part time or full time or somewhere in between. Or some combination of the above.

Caring for, raising and nurturing the next generation is a full time job.

Never mind taking care of a home, finding time for friends and extended family and loving on your spouse.

I've never been one to believe or been limited by others expectations about what I should or could or would do with my time, space, family and energy.  

I work outside of my home by choice and I go to school to obtain a PhD by choice.  Not because I "have to."  There's no "have to" about it - it's all about choice.

This is not just my choice, but a choice made with my husband and for our family.

We have always truly believed that this is the best choice for our family and that this is truly what God wants me and us to do.  As we have progressed on this journey, we have been blessed and amazed by the things that God has used to allow us to continue on this journey without any major difficulties.

Last spring I was handed my dream job - a full time faculty job at the school I teach at teaching all the classes that I really wanted to teach - without applying or even asking.

Last fall I started working toward that position, adding classes and making plans to take on more.   Teaching a full load would start this coming fall.

Then last fall I got really sick with pneumonia - for 4 months.
My Dad got diagnosed with cancer and had surgery.  Now he's doing chemo.
I started teaching Jazzercise more often.
I still haven't finished this dissertation for my PhD - and I didn't make any real progress last fall.

In December, as I sat in a room at the hospital my husband works at with antibiotics for pneumonia flowing into me, I realized that I just can't do that job right now.

I had known I was pushing my limits for a quite a while but that was the final straw.    I just couldn't do it anymore.  I was through thinking that this was just a particularly busy season and I had to push through.  I could not do it anymore.

By complete fluke, in November last fall an upper level class in our department didn't run and my department chairman asked if I would give up one of my lower level classes so that a senior faculty member could make contact hours without really going out of his way to do it.  I agreed, thinking at least I would have time to work on my dissertation.

I don't believe in flukes or coincidences.
I know God knew exactly what He was doing.

In January I told my department chairman that I could not take that full time position right now.  

That I need to finish my dissertation and keep my time open to be there for my family.

I told him that as soon as I finish this PhD thing (which should be coming up soon!), I will be happy to teach two classes a semester (full load is three) but I can't go over that and right now one is plenty.

Fortunately, he understood and was very supportive.  And agreed to stretch out a few things and put others on the back burner for right now so that that dream job is still there later on if I want it.

My dream job.  And I gave it up.

For now.

Because it was the right thing to do.

It was so very, very hard.  But so very, very necessary.

And you know what,  I have absolutely no regrets.

What do you need to say no to today to make your life more in line with what God wants for you?

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Lea