During one of our favorite weekend rituals (a cup of tea and watching CBS Sunday Morning), I came across this report that I really found interesting. I thought you might too:
(sorry. WordPress won’t allow me to directly embed the video, but please give it a click and a watch)
It’s amazing to see how truly color blind (and that’s a good thing) we were when it came to our children. Leave it to the marketing folks and the manufacturers to find a way to not only make some extra cash on our kids, but change an entire cultural mindset to do so.
It’s sort of like mass-hypnosis when you think about it. Quite frightening when you think about it too much…
It’s been my first day returning to work following the arrival of our little guy.
I knew it wouldn’t be easy, and I understand the necessity of it, as being without a job and an income is not exactly helpful to my wife, or my son. So, there is an inherent sense of responsibility that comes along with the little man.
While I wasn’t looking forward to it, I know it hit Meg very hard as I left this morning. With tears in her eyes, and our little boy in her arms, they said goodbye to me for the day and waved to me out the window.
I’ve been lucky enough to have been able to spend ten days with them since his birth, and they have been the best ten days of my life so far. I dreaded the countdown with each day that meant that I wouldn’t be around to help with his diapers, get laundry done while she nursed, or do the dishes when she tried to rest for a few minutes during his naps.
I’ve spent these ten days building an incredible bond with this little person, and strengthened the bond with my wife. So, leaving that behind this morning and heading back into the newsroom where I work has not been the easiest of transitions.
However, while it’s given me a great amount of sadness, it has also given me a great amount of motivation. It inspires me to work even harder, become even more dedicated, to creating a quality of life for my family that is better than what we have. It has made me realize that what stands between me and being a write-from-home dad and husband instead of a write-from-the-newsroom dad is my own dedication and motivation. I want my son to know that doing what you enjoy in life is more than just what people say, it’s something that can be yours. I want him to see from the example I will set that you can create your own career destiny.
Don’t get me wrong, as I know sometimes, it could be taken that I “hate my job,” which is not the case. I have a great boss, and I make a decent living (or at least enough to get by with the student loan debt I unfortunately have). However, it’s never been where my passion lies. I set out to be a writer. Yes, I write, but it’s a more technical form of writing or re-writing of other people’s work throughout the day. What I want, though, is that dream of writing from my home office, of being there for my family while still earning a living for them.
You can want something until the cows come home, and yes, you can work on it a little here and a little there. However, forming a plan, knowing the path, knowing what you need to get there, and most importantly, having those motivations, those people who you want to do it for, that’s an entirely different thing all together.
They’ve given me something to strive for, and I aim to reach it.
My wife recently had a dream.
In it, she says that we ended up having a little girl, and that as she got older, she decided she wanted to be a journalist. In the dream, she says this caused an incredible rift between the daughter and myself, as the many years in journalism professionally made me none too kind to the career prospect for my offspring.
According to my wife’s dream, this then created a falling out and my daughter and I were on non-speaking terms as she went forward with the career she wanted, and I did all I could to talk her out of it.
I’ve worked in different realms of journalism for a few years now. From newspapers to online content to television news, there’s always some sort of struggle and conflict. Whether it’s the age-old struggle of journalism versus the business interests (let’s not forget that many media companies are privately owned), the ever-concerned bottom line (otherwise there will be no paychecks), or the massive egos and condescending personalities of others in the business.
At the end of the day, though, you make it through. You put food on the table for your family, you put gas in the car for another week, and maybe, just maybe, you’ve hopefully made a difference somewhere, even if there’s those around you who don’t feel a story was “worth doing” or questions its validity.
I wish there were more moments like that, but, hey, you take little victories where you can.
These thoughts and expressions are commonplace in our household with my career choice, and so I don’t find it all that surprising that it would weigh on my wife’s subconscious mind and start seeping into her dreams.
Fortunately, our child hasn’t even been born yet (any day now), we don’t know if it will be a girl or a boy, and their career paths are still a long ways off.
However, the dream definitely made me think about when that day comes that they set out on their career goals. I hope my real life self can be a bit more understanding and selfless than the version in my wife’s dream.