Wednesday, February 20, 2013


It's a fast paced world even if you live in the sticks.  

The notion that life in the country moves at a slower pace is outdated if it ever really existed.  I don't think living in the country was ever really slower if you were truly living off the land.  The way my husband talks they were a busy family out here living in rural Texas.  School days were followed by farming and ranching responsibilities.  His Dad worked in town and farmed evenings and weekends.  Mom worked in town, kept house and helped with farming.  That's not leisure living in my book.  

But there were moments of quiet and peace perhaps, that our children may not have. Moments of being surrounded in nature.  I worry our little ones won't have this because it's so hard to "unplug" these days.  While life was jammed packed with work for my husband as a kid, his fondest memory is the hours spent daydreaming on the floor of the tractor listening to AM country radio after school and into the night while his Dad worked peanut crops.  

I work from home 4 days a week and commute into the city for the fifth.  I'm VERY fortunate to have this working situation.  It works for the particular job I do and I admit I have trouble concentrating in cubicle situations because of all the distractions so I think I am a more productive employee this way.  

Photo by Bridget West
Sound perfect?  Well it is and it isn't.  I may be at home, but I work.  I am at my desk from 8 to 5 with an hour lunch.  It's annoying when people say "oh you get to work from home that must give you so much time!"  Yes, I take a 5 minute coffee break and visit with the boys and I take my lunch with them.  That's awesome...except that I don't get to do that most days.  Most days I run through the house at lunch dumping laundry into a washer, making doctor appointments, carting someone to a doctor appointment, running next door to check on my parents, running in to town for groceries, etc.  Just like working Moms in an office situation, I cram a LOT of personal work into that lunch hour.  

I am not just a working Mom.  I am a daughter of senior parents.  

Now they are mostly self sufficient but the last few years have been tough for my Dad and the last few months have been brutal for us all with their health issues.  I am the sandwich generation I'm told.  Young kids & aging parents.  Plus a full time job.  

Me time???  Doesn't exist.  Making time for a date night?  Not happening.  I would consider it a great day to not feel pressure, anxiety and stress over making sure everyone else is taken care of.  I hit the ground running in the morning and it's a long shower for me if I take 5 whole minutes.  I drink instant coffee and sometimes don't have time for the electric kettle to boil so I use hot tap water (gross, but I get the caffeine).   Sometimes I feel like it's aging me as I look in the mirror.  Sometimes I break under it and throw things or snap at my husband or Mother.  I am one person and I have a LOT of dependents.  My brother lives in another state so I'm an only child right now when it comes to caring for them.  He is talking about moving nearby and that would be fantastic.  But until then I have to make it work.  We cannot afford for me to be a stay at home Mom and I don't want to loose that part of my identity.  I worked hard to get my job and have put a lot of myself into the program.  I want my boys to be proud of the work I do.  But lately I feel so cornered.  I also worry that most of the time all the boys see is stressed out Mommy.  They are only 14 months so that means so much of their impressions and perspectives are just forming.  
Photo by Bridget West

I know everyone has pressure.  And I knew being a working Mom would be hard.  And I know we'll make it. 

I would love to connect with other working Moms so leave a comment!  Tell me how you decompress in a schedule that doesn't even allow for personal hygiene!

More later.

Thanks for visiting!



  1. Oh Arlene, I feel your pain! We need to make more of an effort to get together even if it means we have the kids with us. I don't even know how you have time to keep up with this blog! I feel so bad about all the relationships outside of my family that have been neglected but most days I feel like I am just barely keeping my head above the water with work, kids, school, house cleaning, trying to stay healthy, etc... Lets talk soon! Hugs to you and all the boys!!


    1. I know you do Shannon, I often think of you. We'll catch up!