The space between
The tears we cry
Is the laughter keeps us coming back for more

I think there is always a bit of a letdown when you come back from vacation. The responsibilities that you've pushed aside and been allowed to ignore while you were gone, all come crashing back. We've been tired. Not as much extra sleep over vacation as in past years, with Gwen getting us up earlier, and staying up later to visit with family. We've been making it up in the evening some this week, going to bed a bit earlier most nights. We snapped at each other on Sunday night. Trav felt badly on Monday, so we treated ourselves and met after work for dinner. It was relaxing to just order up some food and not have to make it, or clean up after it. It gave us a chance to talk too, which was nice. We agreed that we need to work on communicating better... in a nicer way.

Work has been keeping me very busy since I got back, and the few breaks I've had during the day, I've spent running errands or spending some time with the intern who is leaving next week. He was a G*d-send during my maternity leave, and we've been sharing an office for the past two months since I returned, so its hard to see him go. Not to mention that I'm just not happy with work at the moment. Being so contented with Gwen and my family life has made me even more aware of how not contented I am there. Its not who I am... I don't think it ever was... and I can't keep plugging away at something that doesn't offer me more then wonderful coworkers and a mediocre paycheck. I need more from my job. I want to show Gwen not to settle, to do something that brings her happiness and a sense of purpose. I want her to have a balanced life, a full life, a content life. I'm not balanced right now and its taking its toll.

If any of you have read Eat, Pray, Love (if you haven't, I definitely recommend it!), then my word right now is between. Between that place where I was contented with a job that paid the bills because of the nice benefits it offered, and a place where I am in a job that I actually enjoy, which gives me a sense of purpose. Between a place of it being all about me, then all about Gwen, and a place where I have a happy balance of time and energy for my daughter, while still making sure that I'm taking care of myself (I'm almost there on this one... I'm getting better). Between a house that I can stand because it is affordable, and has a few redeeming qualities and I know we won't be there forever, and a place where I actually look forward to raising my child(ren), and want to make it a "forever home". I'm between, floating along in this place.

This being between, I don't like it. Its left me feeling rushed and disoriented, ungrounded and left hanging. I am having trouble falling asleep some nights again because I can't turn the mind off, but during the day I'm forgetful and can't seem to get my brain in gear! Its unnerving. I'm overwhelmed.

So I beseech you blogosphere... any suggestions for how to make a career switch after the better part of a decade in a certain job? If you could picture me in any job, what would you see me doing?

Here's what I've come up with so far, not just for the job stuff, but for life in general.

  1. Try to fit in a me activity every week, and encourage Trav to do the same.
  2. Take more walks and spend more time outside.
  3. Take my mom up on her babysitting offer, and do something just Trav & I. At least once every other month, and once Gwen is a little older (lets say when she's doing more solids then breast milk), every month. 
  4. Focus completely on where I am at the time. If I'm at work, I'll concentrate on work... if I'm at home, I'll concentrate on home. I can't give 100% somewhere if I'm 20, 50, 90% somewhere else! 
  5. Try to find the things about work that are the most enjoyable, and find ways to expand them. 
For the long-term:
  1. Try to figure out what type of job would make me happy (that I can realistically get to)* and take steps to get there. 
  2. Search those job sites. 
  3. Keep one eye on the housing market. 
  4. Pick up an exercise habit that I can do routinely: running, swimming, yoga, etc. Something that I enjoy and will stick with. Make time for it at least every other day. Encourage Trav to do the same.

Anyway, I'm going to go relax a little and have a snack before bed. If you've made it this far, you're patient! Feedback, please. 

* I love spending time outdoors, doing things for the environment, taking care of animals. I enjoy writing, taking photos, helping people. The problem... any job that I can thing of that has to do with those things either requires more schooling then I have, or more specific schooling, or it is something that is p/t, hourly, with a wage that I cannot do. I have to make a certain amount right now to do my part towards keeping our mortgage paid, as well as that second mortgage which is daycare. I'm stumped. I'm stuck.


  1. this may sound very hard to do right now.... but go away for the weekend with travis, and leave Gwen with your parents. the whole weekend. Friday through Sunday. you need to recharge your mommy batteries, it will help you see things more clearly. eric and i went on vacation when jonathan was 6m old and it was great. we really needed it.

    sometimes you just have to stumble on a career change, it will find you. it wasn't my plan to be a spin instructor, it was just a passion that i made into a fun job.

    what about taking pictures of children, like the portraits you and trav had done when gwen was new. you can get plenty or practice taking pics of your own baby.

  2. What about looking for a new media position for an environmental non-profit. You could blog, tweet, facebook post for them incorporating writing and photo taking. Maybe start doing this for a group you enjoy on a volunteer basis so its something you could add to your resume?

    I bought my car back, so I can finally come and visit you guys now and meet Gwen. We'll have to pick a date soon that I can plan to come down and we can catch up!


  3. I went through something very similar to what you're describing. I was always work I was thinking about home, then since I had things stacking up, at home I was thinking about work. For me it was such a strange, spacey feeling that I couldn't put a finger on. But what I could put a finger on is that I didnt like it, at all. Thankfully most of it has passed this month and in its place there is a balance and feeling of fulfillment both at work and at home. I wish I had a magical tip to pass along, but I really think it was just a matter of giving it enough time to find the balance.

    Hope yours finds you soon!

  4. Thanks for the advice all!

  5. What you said in your post is almost how I've been feeling... minus the little one and family thing. It's something I've been trying to figure out as well. I haven't been with this job as long as you have with yours, but I do know I want to do something on the side, just not sure what just yet.

    My advice to you really is I know you're an extremely talented and intelligent person. You're awesome at writing and as someone mentioned above, maybe something like blogging for a company or non-profit environmental or animal rescue is something you should look for. Look into the interests you have on career sites and see what you can find. Also, check out the papers, craigslist and so on. You'd be surprised what you can find sometimes. I wish you the best of luck with this and you know how to contact me if you want to talk ;)


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