I’m the type of person who is most comfortable when following a routine. But I also know that I grow the most when I’m not comfortable. For me, discomfort is a catalyst for growth. My heart wants consistency, and finds security it knowing what comes next, but my head needs variety, ambiguity, and unexpected challenges in order to level-up, leadership wise. Learning to intentionally put myself outside of my comfort-zone, to embrace risk, and to value potential for growth over comfort, has been one of the great lessons of my late-20s.
Motherhood has a way of teaching you how to thrive through transition. Pre-motherhood MJ was on a conquest for peace, routine, and balance. Mom-MJ has since recognized the value in finding the peace within times of uncertainty, transition, and discomfort. It’s all very zen, I suppose.
This is all to say that transitioning back to working full-time has been quite the time of growth for me. (In case you’re wondering if it’s as a hard as they say, transitioning from stay-at-home/work-at-home parent, to 9-5 working parent, let me just tell you: yes. Yes, it is.) Elle, on the other hand, has never been better. She loves all the time she gets to spend with her Nana, and is just as much the little angel as she always has been. I think it’s hilarious how differently Elle and I react to my being away from home.
Lest any of this is taken as complaining, I suppose I need to say: I’m over-the-moon about my new job, and I’m delighted with how easily Elle has transitioned. Life is good, all around. Am I a little heartbroken, watching my little love grow more and more independent every day? Of course. But at the same time, I’m just so proud of her. One thing is clear: I’m the one with separation anxiety, not the child.
It’s beautiful, the way motherhood simultaneously softens your heart like an overripe piece of fruit, yet at the same time thickens your skin, and toughens you up, and increases your strength. I’m the toughest and the softest I’ve ever been, all at the same time. And it’s a great–albeit uncomfortable–feeling.
Let’s be friends!