Anonymous Stories in Motherhood: I Don’t Want to Work Anymore

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I don’t want to work anymore. That is a truth that has been difficult for me to acknowledge for many reasons, too many to process here right now. After the birth of my second child, I realized that I needed a change, a fresh start. I wrestled with thoughts of leaving my job for more than a year before I actually took any action. At the beginning of 2020, I started to search for new opportunities and even submitted my resume for a position I thought would be perfect for me. Unfortunately, I didn’t get called for an interview, and then our world spiraled into a pandemic. The job search has been on hold ever since.

I’ve done some self-reflection over the past couple of months, trying to figure out what I want to do next. I’ve considered jobs in my current field and not, but the truth is, deep down, I don’t want to work anymore. When I think about my primary motivations in looking for a new job, it all boiled down to having more time at home and more time for myself.

Commuting, hours spent in the office, the stress of “balancing” family and work, plus a declining passion for the work I was doing, all began to add up. It felt like a waste of time and depleted my energy. Most workdays, I would find myself running through a list of things I would rather be doing or that I couldn’t do because I was confined to a desk. Even as I looked for new job opportunities, I realized that even if I did find a new job, I would likely have the same issues. Maybe a new job wasn’t the right solution. 

Enter coronavirus. Like a lot of people, I’m currently working from home with my husband and two young kids. No day is the same, and each has its challenges, but I must admit, I am loving being home with my children. Over the last few weeks, I’ve seen my children reach developmental milestones, literally growing right before my eyes. I have watched my daughter learn to walk confidently and add new words to her vocabulary. I’ve seen my son exhibit so much care for his younger sister. I’ve learned so much about each child’s personality. We have explored the outdoors in the middle of the day, played with every toy we own and have shared so many snuggles, laughs, and cries. We’ve relaxed our schedule and enjoyed much-needed quality time. In the grind of our typical schedule, we wouldn’t have enjoyed many of these moments.

One day, a friend asked me what COVID-19 was teaching me. My exact words to her were, “honestly, being around the kids all day, every day, I’ve realized how much I miss of their daily lives and development. I have definitely enjoyed having more time with them, and I’m also sad that I’ve missed out on so much time during the week.”

Being quarantined with my family has forced me to acknowledge the truth that has simmered below the surface for a while now. I don’t want to work anymore. At this point, I don’t have any idea what I will do with that truth, but I believe acknowledging it and accepting it is a step in the right direction. 

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