Three weeks ago, I left a career that I had spent almost 10 years building to join a new industry in order to work from home. The decision was not easy and nearly broke my heart. I cried the entire way home on my last day at my old office. I cried giving my resignation and telling my boss that I was checking out.
The Sunday after Thanksgiving, I cried to my husband about how there were only 5 Sundays left before the little man went to daycare. I had been so lucky that my company let me bring Baby J to work with me part-time and work from home part-time since I returned from maternity leave at 9 weeks. But that agreement couldn’t last forever. My heart started breaking over the thought of sending him to daycare.
We had spent months searching for the perfect childcare and we’d found a place that I was comfortable with. A quiet Catholic church with other kids who were clean, fed, and looked happy. It would have been a good place. But Baby J wasn’t sleeping on his own, he had been breastfed on demand for his life, and he was still so needy. He cried every time we rode in the car. He cried the second you put him down (who am I kidding, that isn’t better). I knew he wasn’t ready and frankly, neither was I.
A crazy opportunity dropped into my lap that would let me financially support our family while also keeping Baby J at home. It took 5 days to decide and I still cried when I wrote that resignation letter.
Now, I cry for a whole different reason. I cry because I don’t know how to keep doing this 24/7. I cry because he won’t stop screaming while I’m on conference calls. I cry because I feel alone here at home. I cry because I’m hiring a part-time nanny so that I keep my sanity. I cry because I’m home all day and there’s still dishes and laundry piled up. I cry because I miss my career. I cry because I don’t know this new industry. I cry because I talk to the kid, the dog, the cat, and the TV all day. I cry because my husband gets to go to lunch with his coworkers. I cry because Target feels like a spa day. I cry because I need a spa day.
I know that this season is worthwhile for me and for him. I know that this rough time will pass and we will be okay on the other side. But walking through it, day after day, moment after fussy moment, it feels like a deathgrip on my pulse. PPD and PPA do not make this easier. It makes it infinitely harder when I am home alone at 11pm on a Monday night jealous that my husband is out having conversations with adults. The sadness and the loneliness of working from home aren’t things that people talk about. Or maybe it’s just me- maybe I’m just in shock from what was to what is. Maybe?