Wednesday, June 11, 2008

Old friends, amazing lives

In the past few weeks, I've gotten in touch with around 50 of my old friends from Berkeley through an email chain that my sorority sisters started to get back in touch. Except for about a dozen of the women, I had lost touch with the majority of the group over the past 20 years. I was amazed and impressed with the depth, breadth and passion of their lives. Since we went to Cal, it should not have been a surprise how many of us went into what I think of as "do-gooder" professions (i.e. social work, education, non-profits, public policy, politics, medicine, law). One woman even became a Member of Congress (How did I miss that?)! 

I love reading about what my old gal pals -- and we are getting old -- are up to, but it drives home this feeling that I'm sidelined right now while staying home with my baby and preschooler. On good days, I feel like I'm doing the best thing for me and my family right now, plus it's pretty fun. On bad days, I feel like the woman in those old Calgon commercials: "Calgon, take me away..." And I start imagining the career paths not chosen or the meaningful, exciting, well-paid jobs I think I could be doing. As my friend Shelley once pointed out to me though, "We have the rest of our lives to work." And I think she's right. After all, until I did this job (SAHM), I had been working since I was 15. A few years off to raise babies is a blip in the larger ocean of work, right? 

1 comment:

Stacie said...

you are so right, and let me just say you don't have to be a SAHM to feel that way -- i work FT at a job that is just that -- just a job, not a career -- and I feel sidelined most days, like superwoman on a special occasions, and generally tired on the rest. I'd say you are lucky to have a few years off to be a consultant to your own family project! And then, once the kids are more or less launched into The System, you can retool your own plan.

But it's so much easier said than lived with. Just know you're not alone, sister!