I had an epiphany yesterday about being a mom. You really don't have to love it to be good at it. Like any job, it's helpful to love it - obviously you'll be more positive, motivated, and a nicer mom to be around, that said - I don't always love it. Like any job, it has its ups and downs. Of all the jobs, I think it truly is the most fulfilling, challenging, and fun, but that doesn't mean it's all giggles and hugs and smiles and awww moments.
Yesterday, I was talking to my dad and he kept reminding me to have my own personal interests and passions besides being a mom. He asked me what was going on with that aerobic certification I had hoped to obtain while in Spokane. I told him it was put on hold since I had to teach classes and didn't have the energy to figure out where or who I could teach or even what. I remembered the "cardio dance party" I attempted to teach in California to church girls, and recall it being a disaster since I couldn't quite gauge the level of experience everyone would have and spent so much time mulling over how to make it harder or easier and ended up just looking unprepared. Ugh.
Anyway, as my dad was lecturing me, I told him, "Dad, you might think I love motherhood above all else, but it's not always that great." He seemed taken aback. My normal positive attitude has him thinking motherhood is all I want to do. As if I do not have any other personal interests, desires, or need for me time. "Dad," I continued, "it's kind of like any job. I do like it and find it more valuable than working working, but obviously, it's not always so fun, but a positive attitude helps - that doesn't mean I've forgotten about everything else that makes me me." He told me I used to be a "career woman" and this is when I had to laugh out loud. "Dad," I started, "just because I try to be good at something doesn't mean I love it. I think people often confuse effort for love, obviously whatever I do, I want to be good at, but it doesn't mean I love it." He was surprised, but as I explained more, he understood my perspective. "I don't like cooking, but if I'm going to do it everyday, I might as well be good at it or what's the use, right?!"
After I got off the phone with my dad, I had a tough day. One of those, dang, wish I could take a personal day today type a days. We all need a break sometime and normally, my break is in the form of work during Jordan's naps. On days he decides not to nap (like yesterday), it can be really difficult to have a conference call I set up during his nap, or finish fulfilling deliverables I meant to send during his nap. And once he's up and about, he's not exactly all smiles or a bundle of joy. Instead, the smallest thing will have him throwing a tantrum on the floor, cheek against the rug, crying and thrashing his arms. Normally, a few minutes of no attention seems to do the trick, but on these fatigued I refuse to sleep days, it is prolonged a few minutes longer, and those minutes feel like pure torture. Add to that the work doesn't ever seem to get done and a horrible day is had.
I know everyone should do something they love, but we all don't have that lucky opportunity. Sometimes reality such as supporting a family or doing the right thing gets in the way. Alas, you really don't have to love it to be good at it or to even try to be good at it. You just have to want it bad enough. For those who can find jobs they also love, more power to you. Duh. I love both my jobs on some days and some days, I don't love it so much. I figure as long as I normally love it more than I detest it... I'll be okay.