This is brought to you by my very first accountant in my past life as a business owner. Two of my three (twenty-something) boys are currently home with me. Regardless of the circumstances, it’s glorious to (almost) all be together.
Back to my accountant, Phyllis. She gave me what is probably the best advice I received as a business owner and a new mom: when you have to choose between work and family, always err on the side of your child. Her words were sort of an everyday version of the quote attributed to Harold Kushner: “No one ever said on his deathbed ‘I wish I’d spent more time at the office’.” Make room for your family to win.
When my boys were little and I worked from home, I did my best to honor their requests. When they were in school, I still structured my business life around them. I managed to be room mom every year and attended almost every field trip. Before they reached middle school, I “retired” to be sure I was home the minute they walked through that door after school. I instinctively knew those first fifteen minutes were the most important. If they had something to say, that’s when it usually got said. I made sure I was mentally present as well as physically there.
Once the last one secured his driver’s license, things shifted again. After school time no longer mattered. Instead, it was waiting for them to get home when they went out with friends. It also meant setting my work aside (or just the routine house-related tasks) when I was invited to sit and watch a movie. Or binge-watch our current favorite series.
Weekend togetherness disappeared when they all went off to college. Time then became relegated (and limited to) holidays and summers (and even summers have disappeared since all three have now graduated college).
With two of them currently in residence, I again, gladly set everything aside when asked to watch a movie. I cherish every conversation. Family dinners linger long after the last bite has been eaten. These days are amazing and mundane and bittersweet. And I am savoring every moment.
Thank you, Phyllis, for that sage advice almost thirty ago. You’ve influenced me greatly and benefited my boys in ways I’m sure we’ll never be able to measure. I’ll credit myself for being smart enough to listen.
When the world opens again, it will be time to get back to work. To continue from where we left off. Although I remain ready to set it all aside when one of them needs me, and of course, we’ll celebrate on the occasions when they all come home.
What great advice did you receive from an unexpected source? Did you follow it? And…? I’d love to know below!
P.S. I’ve been adding a new recipe to my website almost every day. I only post recipes that I have tested myself. From cookies to vegetables to main dishes, keep checking back to see what’s new. You know I love to bake – and I’m always happy to share my recipes – so if you have a recipe you’d like to see added, just let me know below.
Amy Hopkins says
My Mother always told me, “everything in moderation except for love”. ❤️
Mair Hill says
That’s so beautiful.
(I have never been good at moderation – although my husband is a huge fan of that concept.)
My mom who has her heavenly wings now used to always tell me, ‘you can’t catch up on sleep!’ You just sleep or not but you can’t really catch up with it. 🤔
Mair Hill says
Smart woman! Sleep has always been a priority in our house. We made sure of that when the boys were growing up and they continue to make it a priority now that they’re on their own.
Mair! This brought me to tears tonight. It was one of those days and I really needed to hear this! Thank you for being YOU!
Mair Hill says
Oh yay! You made my day! Thank you!