That Was Then, This Is Now

I went out this week. At night time, to a pub, and everything! I was meeting up with a couple of lovely friends that I used to work with. We like to get together every now and again and have a good old catch up, as friends do. I really enjoy seeing them, and every single time that I do, it’s puts me in a reflective mood.

Everything about these nights out remind me of a life that I once had. Even the journey to the pub takes me on one of my old commuter routes. It takes me back. It has me thinking about a big chunk of my life, that was so very important to me, and is no more.

I drove to the pub in my family car. I like it, but it’s not quite the same as my Audi was. My mind was full of the events of this past week, a new blog series I’m starting up, and the children’s bedtime that I’d just enjoyed. It was a far cry from thinking about mortgage regulation, advisor observations and planning appraisals, the subjects that used to pervade my every waking thought.

I thought about how much my life has changed. Just 5 years ago I wore a suit 5 days a week, not jeans and my Converse. I was sitting in traffic by 7.30 every day, not doling out Cheerios and toast. I’d have had a day of meetings, phone calls and emails ahead of me, not Play Doh, the park and story-time. I would have had holidays to Italy and LA planned, not Cornwall and Skegness.Β I got total privacy when I went to the toilet, ate my meals without interruptions, slept in at the weekends, and got to do pretty much whatever I wanted. Β I was respected and in control. Now, I am….not!

I didn’t have my cards business, I didn’t have this blog, which are two huge parts of my life now, and all of the friends and opportunities that have come along with both of these things. I wouldn’t have found my new interests in baking and gardening, and I know I wouldn’t have gone back to my old letter-writing days. And obviously the most important factors in all of this, I didn’t have my beautiful Boo and Little Man.

I had freedom and I had money. I could have it again, to an extent. I could go back to working like this. I would barely see my children, of course…This is what these meet-ups always have me reflecting on.

Things have changed beyond all recognition in my life, though my fabulous Husband remains my rock. He makes me feel worthwhile, when all I’ve done that day is run round after the kids and clean up, rather than recruit, coach or motivate someone. I used to feel I made a real difference in my job, I had self-worth and self-respect, and I know I was good at it. He reminds me that I’m doing a great job, when I have no upcoming HR reviews to tell me so, or inspired staff to make me feel I’m doing something right. He assures me that we’re managing, when times are tough, and this is the way to live and be happy. And he is right. Looking back, I did love my job and my life, but that was then and this is now. And there’s nowhere I’d rather be.

Linking up with #ThePrompt, and this week’s prompt of ‘reflection’.

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40 thoughts on “That Was Then, This Is Now”

  1. And I for one totally salute you. It’s never been a “job” I’ve hankered for in my life but for a non-parent it’s SO nice to see a young mum staying home and bringing up the kids she’s chosen to have (even better both by the same father and a husband at that, too)! You made a great reference in your blog quite unassumingly but one I spotted, The mention of the family car !
    It can be done that mums stay home looking after their kids and not return to work and farm them out to all & sundry. All it takes is a little sacrifice, You don’t need 2 cars, you don’t need a TV in every available room or the electronic gizmos people just feel they HAVE to have or the 200+ TV channels they can’t live without. Then, hey presto, those little folk you chose to bring into your world get the lives they deserve bring raised by their parents !!
    What a novelty.
    I’ll get off my soapbox now. Just wanted you to know I applaud you xx

    1. Oh, you and your soapbox, Lynda! You do make me smile πŸ™‚ I think everyone is different, every family and financial situation unique, so I do say each to their own. But for me, and for us, this feels right. We get by, and I’m here with the kids, so we’re happy.

  2. Ahhh I love this post. It reminds me of what my life used to be like too before I went part time after I had z. It’s still like that some days and it’s so hard to balance and try to not let it interfere with my mum life. I do get tempted to quit sometimes and embrace a completely new life as you’ve done but it’s such a massive step and one I’m not sure of just yet. If the time is right. If it’s right for us all. Hmmmm reflection indeed πŸ™‚

    1. Thank you. I know it’s a huge step, I felt on a precipice when I resigned. It was a very good job with a very good salary to go with it! But I did it and we’re happy – phew!

  3. Such a lovely post, and so true. I left work to be a stay at home mum too, and can totally relate to everything you are saying. Striking that balance between work and home is tough, and it wasn’t something I did very well. I am so thankful to have a fixed focus now, even if it does mean less income and the kids driving me crazy the odd day! E x

    1. Oh yes, there is the possibility we could go mad! But on balance, it’s where I want to be each day. Thank you x

  4. Your world gets turned upside down when you have children and it is all for the better! Your priorities change and there is nothing more important than being able to spend time with our little ones. Lovely post. Mel

  5. Beautifully written; lovely thoughts & reflections.
    …I think there’s beauty & discovery to be found behind every door :). It’s so great to have that moment to realise the beauty you’ve found where you’re at right now!
    Good on your Mr for cheering you on!

  6. It’s funny, even though I enjoyed life pre-children I have no wish to have any of that time back. Don’t get me wrong, I enjoyed my life but I can’t imagine a life without my two now. And yes, being at home does involve sacrifices and there are days when trying to juggle the home, children and a freelance job are just exhausting beyond belief. I still wouldn’t have it any other way.

  7. I don’t think anyone really imagines what life will be like after having children, I’ve done it all, had kids, spent time at home, gone back to work, kids have grown up, then I started all over again! Crazy I know, but worth it. It’s nice to reflect on what was, but remember there is so much more to come!

  8. suzanne3childrenandit

    Great post. It’s so interesting to look back on our old life, isn’t it? I’ve been in this ‘role’ so long now, I barely remember being employed! One of the hardest things about being a SAHM is that there’s no HR review or bonus, or people to pat you on the back. In fact most of the time, you feel the opposite. Wonderful that you have a husband who recognises this need. He’s a keeper!

    1. He certainly is! It’s our 12th wedding anniversary tomorrow, so we’ve been in it together for a while πŸ™‚

  9. Great post! It’s amazing how much small people can change your life isn’t it? I feel the same as you about staying at home with the kids but I also have a fantastic OH that keeps reminding me what a good job I am doing πŸ™‚

  10. Lovely post, and really interesting to read a little about you before you became a mum! It is a choice we make but I’m like you and would happily sacrifice a lot of the aspects I previously loved in my old life, to be where I am now. Lovely post πŸ™‚ #theprompt xx

  11. I can so relate to this, in fact I’ve blogged about it a couple of times! I still have days when I struggle to reconcile my new life with the old. But, I wouldn’t go back to the juggling and the stress; and I certainly can’t imagine my life without my kids. It may be the hardest job, but it’s definitely the best one. Thanks so much for linking to #ThePrompt xx

  12. What a great post. I was so lucky to have the best of both worlds with Grace and, even though she went to nursery two days a week I got to spend so much time with her. I am also lucky that I get to pick her up from school now and spend time with her then. Thank you for linking to PoCoLo x

  13. I love reading this, it such a refreshing change to hear women acknowledge her former career and then celebrate being a SAHM. Clearly things have changed for the better, Good for you.

    1. Thanks very much. Yes, all’s very different in my world now, but I wouldn’t have it any other way πŸ™‚

  14. What a lovely moment of reflection Jocelyn. You’ve made me begin to compare my now with my life before twins.. It’s funny how so quickly, life before seems like a million miles away, the good and the bad!

  15. Wow, I so relate to this post as I’m sort of in your happy place…or nearly!! I laughed as I remembered what it’s like to go to the toilet alone and related to the reflection of your life then and now. Reconciling then and now in your own mind can be a toughie, let alone the guilt levied by others when you make a decision to either become a SAHM or try and get back some of the former self. I’m happy to read that you’ve reconciled and are happy, and one thing everyone agrees on is that the little people in our lives are the most important and we wouldn’t change having them for the world xx

    1. Thank you for your comments. It is a different world, and there’s lots to reconcile, but all worth it πŸ™‚

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