Those who know me are fully aware of my subterranean life. I work in a home office in the basement. I click the mouse, pick the colors and bang the keyboard for way too many hours a day.
It has its advantages. Let’s see, I am not distracted by windows or changes in weather. I can stay focused. There is no real time, I can simulate night or day at my own whim.
There are times when I think, ‘please G-d get me out of here’. But mostly I am happy with the set-up. Sometimes towards the end of a weekend I get a little heady from being above ground too long. Too much daylight and fresh air maybe. I do occasionally worry that this controlled environment makes me, what I like to refer to as a ‘social recluse’. Don’t get me wrong, I love people, I just prefer extended periods of time with my dog during the week.
This could be why I love this blogging thing. I guess you could say that the social recluse branches out without upsetting the agoraphobic apple cart. (there could also be a good chance that I am certifiably insane, but we will talk about my mental health at a later date).
During a conversation with the First Thursdays (you will hear about them soon) about working women, we got on the topic of breaking the glass ceiling. There is no glass ceiling in the basement (rather dangerous, no?) The conversation went around the table about achievements of women, famous and those we know personally. At times like those I sometimes feel a slight regret about where my career could have gone if I did not have a family.
But then I realize that I may not have climbed the ladder and broken that ceiling (which sounds quite painful, actually), but I have created a balance that enabled me to do what I do (whatever that is), make a good living, feel a sense of professional fulfillment and still be, not only the Chairman of the Basement, but also the kind of mom I needed to be to my kids. (And of course if I carry dog biscuits at board meetings I can get the dog to vote my way).
Net of it all for me? I can always turn up the steam and work my butt off, but I can’t get back my little kids. Or my tweens. Or my teenagers (yes, I happen to love having teenagers. perhaps because they get my sophomoric humor best).
Don’t get me wrong, I do not preach that women cannot have it all. They can. AND SHOULD. It just needs to be the all that THEY choose. Hey, some of best friends carry the windex up there! (a glass ceiling should always be clean).
I will end this ramble with a plea to all women (and men for that matter). Can we stop being our own worst enemies. Working moms criticizing stay-at-homes for giving up their lives; stay-at-homes criticizing working for not being there enough.
Everyone has their own ride. Let’s support each other for our choices and be cool about it.
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