It happened again yesterday. Right in the middle of an important conference call, I heard the tell-tale footsteps. I watched the door knob of my room/office door turn and knew once again that my two-year-old had ignored my pictorial “Do Not Disturb” sign. We practiced not bothering Mommy while the sign is up and asking Sissy instead, but apparently he forgets.
With stealthy movements that might cause the FBI to consider me for employment, I picked him up and put a finger to my lips. Miraculously, he kept quiet until I got outside of hearing distance from the phone to see what he needed. This time.
By the time I got back to the phone, I had missed a few key pieces of information. I guess I’ll have to e-mail my boss for them. Again.
Working from home cannot be described in a cut and dry bullet point list. The scenario I just gave could be on the pro or the con side. True, it would be easier to listen to a conference call without worry that the boss is going to ask, “Do I hear someone’s baby?” As a Type A, “just get it done” person, I like to work without interruptions until the job is done.
However, the fact that my two-year-old has access to me instead of a day care worker is priceless in my opinion. It’s worth the antics I have to go through to fill up a sippy cup or deal with a discipline issue in the middle of my work time.
The truth is that the pros and cons are kind of jumbled. I have a flexible schedule, but I also have flexible pay. I can work and home school my kids, but some days one or the other priority has to suffer. I can see each developmental stage first hand, but I’m also here for every temper tantrum and potty accident.
Lunch with the girls has been replaced with PBJ sandwiches with boys who like to make rude noises and one girl who enjoys reprimanding them.
A quiet, corner office has been replaced with a corner desk in my bedroom that is sometimes subjected to hurtling footballs when kids forget it is off-limits.
Career advancement moves only as fast as my kids’ independence advances.
I love being my kids’ teacher, my own boss, the chief home manager and head chef. Type A, remember? But some days, it’s hard. And that’s perfectly fine. Because whether you are a non-paid, stay-at-home mom or a high powered executive with no children, I’m guessing you have hard days, too.
For you, the reader: Do you find your pros and cons are actually be two sides of the same coin? What are the best and worst things about working at home for you?