I have always been an ambitious person. I am a perfectionist, a workaholic, my own worst enemy, and I am rarely pleased with my position in life. I am always thinking of how to get more of something: knowledge, experience, education. You name it, I aim for it. I remember when I was little, I told my parents that I wanted to be a doctor of something. I knew I didn’t want to be a medical doctor, but I was aware that there were other ways to be a doctor of something. I told them it didn’t matter if I was a garbage man, I would be Doctor Devon. I still intend to keep that promise, to have those three coveted letters after my name. But, not now. Not when I don’t have a full time job that pays the bills, as I will not educate myself out of a job. And not when I have three little ladies who need me to be Mommy, and who do not care what letters come after my name, who believe I am everything to them, as long as I can be there for them everyday.
Some friends of mine have been getting all sorts of promotions at their jobs. One became a doctor earlier this week, a few got advancements in rank, even my husband got a new position today at his job, one that allows for more security, more income, and is a better opportunity. I am proud of all of them, and I do not begrudge them their successes. I feel so happy that they have professional successes. And I know one day, I will as well. But right now, I am honored to do what I can on a part time basis, for my full time gig comes with three little letters of its own: MOM. Sure, being an adjunct is less than ideal, but it works with motherhood. My choices are driven by my responsibilities to my girls; I keep them first in mind, always. And, so far, I am getting better at the negotiation, and it has worked out well. I will teach and tutor part time, be a part time student to finish the MA program, and do what I can with what I’ve earned. Full time perks with all their glory (and an office!!) will come to me, and I am in no rush. For the first time in a long time, I am comfortable in the waiting place. I know I will come across a good opportunity, one that will make sense for me to leave my kids for longer days, focus less on being a full time mom and more on being a full time professional. It will come. But not today.
Yes, as an ambitious lady, it isn’t always easy to swallow to set aside my professional goals for my kids. I never saw myself NOT working full time, but I know that the best work I can do right now is in my role as mother. There will be plenty of time to work myself into a puddle, but I won’t always have this time to be an amazing mom who can be there for her kids whenever they need her. I know a position will come along that will not allow me to be able to be there for my girls at a moment’s notice, so until then, I intend on being the most present mom I can be for my girls. I have set myself on a path for greatness, and I will follow it at my own pace until it grabs me by the hand and accelerates my progress. I love my girls and our time together. So much. I also love my job and my time there. So much. It’s all a balancing act, not always in balance (hardly ever, really), and it’s one I am glad I have some semblance of control over at the moment.
I am at peace with my journey, my path, and my passion. The Universe takes care of Her own, and I trust in that. What is for me will not pass me. I know that “PhD” will follow my name in time. Until then, I will relish everyday of being “mom” to those three little girls who are my reason to be better, to give them someone to look up to. For now, I am glad that they can look into my eyes and know that I gladly, and with immense pride, ensure that they come first, everyday, and that I have the rest of my life to become Dr. Devon, PhD. Heck, I may not be “PhD” until I am “Grandma.” And that is okay! I will keep that promise to my parents, to myself, and to my girls. I’m having too much fun with the most important three letters in my name; everything else comes second to “mom.”
Man, isn’t that the truth?