The only thing constant is change. It’s a quote from 2500 years ago.
Yet, we are still resisting change.
Somehow, remembering that there are seasons of life, that there are phases of our journey, that this too inevitably shall pass can be really helpful.
Particularly, I find as a woman physician that my life is defined in phases. There was high school, college, medical school, residency, my first jobs as an attending, becoming a faculty member, getting married, being pregnant, breastfeeding, the nanny phase, the preschool phase, and now the kindergarten phase.
Each phase has required different things of me. The biggest changes I found were in the pregnancy, baby, preschool phases. I just no longer work could work two nights a week until 10 or 11pm. Those two nights a week away from my family were no longer acceptable to me. Working from home all night every night was no longer possible, nor was it acceptable to me.
I could no longer leave the house without an Act of God. I could no longer bathe alone or in peace. Now I see that these are choices and I could have hired someone to help care for my little one so that I could leave the house easily or bathe easily, but I didn’t.
Those baby and preschool years was a phase. It required different things of me than now this kindergarten phase allows. I learned from female physician leaders at a meeting of women physicians for us to accept ourselves at different phase of our journey and perhaps adjust expectations for ourselves based on our own desires, expectations, and bandwith.
Now, I’m not saying that women should change their work due to their childrearing, I’m saying every woman has a choice how she wants to do this. What worked in the past may or may not work. What is working now may or may not be what will be in the next phase of life. Our life phases most certainly don’t have to be defined by our children. Wherever we are, in our 20s, 30s, 40s, 50s, we can look that this too is a phase, a season of our lives. There is education, working, and retirement.
I remind myself often that this will one day be the good old days. So I might as well try to do whatever I can to enjoy them while they are here. Because is there is one thing that is for certain, these days won’t be here for long.