dove

Chris has not slept in about a month.  He has had a weight on his shoulders.  He had a lofty decision to make between career ambition and family.  It is true that you can have both career ambition and a strong and healthy family life; but in this case Chris knew that his career choice would come at a cost to his family.

It is an interesting crossroad to come to when you realize that the career ambition you once had does not exist in a bubble.  That with a young family, there are powers at play that may be more important than the hefty job title and the power that exists in the corporate sphere.

Chris’ awesome new promotion came with 80% travel and a ton of responsibility.  We as a family included the children in our conversations about this new opportunity and the amount of time their dad would be away from home.

We thought it would all work out.

In the four weeks Chris worked this new traveling job Preston cried a lot.  He missed his dad.  When Chris was home Preston would be anxious about Chris leaving again.

On weekends when Chris would leave the house and go into the garage to get something, Elsie would frantically ask if her dad was leaving again.

Violet inquired every night about when her dad would come home.  She said she missed him.

The relationship between Ava and Chris suffered.

During these weeks when Chris was away I worked like a maniac driving kids to their activities and made sure everyone had dinner on my own.  I read to everyone by myself.  I lay in bed with each one of my babies and kissed them goodnight each night, trying to fill the role of both parents.  Then I collapsed in my bed, exhausted.

That was our new life.  But the new arrangement was not working well for our family.

Chris had to make a very difficult decision. Ultimately, he chose his family over his work ambition.  He had to give up that job that was his dream so many years ago before the kids came along.  His heart broke but he knew he was doing the right thing.

He may have let some people down.  He may have burned some bridges with people he cares about.  He may have hurt some feelings.  He isn’t sleeping at night because this weighs heavy on his heart.

What Chris did, though, is take the courageous path. He took a risk.  He made a change.  He may have not have handled it perfectly, but by doing what he felt is right for his family, he ultimately chose the right path.

In life you can only hope that if you do the right thing for the right reasons, everything will work out and there will be success, love and understanding as an outcome.

That is the lesson for us to teach our children.  That is the lesson for us to remind ourselves even in adulthood.

Until next time, the mothership is signing off.

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The Seasons of Change

10 thoughts on “The Seasons of Change

  • October 28, 2013 at 6:47 pm
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    Megan, Chris did not let anyone down, in the truest sense of the word. Chris gave his position his all and that was reflected in the accolades he earned over the years at Takeda. Yes, I am sure there are many people he touched that are disappointed about his decision. But if they are true friends, in the end, they will respect his decision and wish him well in his new endeavor. Those relationships will endure. Those who took another tact, were selfish and self-dealing and in that respect, he lost nothing.

    Reply
    • October 28, 2013 at 8:08 pm
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      Well said Dick! Thank you.

      Reply
  • October 28, 2013 at 7:19 pm
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    A brave decision. The right decision. Reminds me of an article I read earlier this year in the Huffington Post. The lessons learned from dying people are valuable, but #2 (below) is especially fitting:

    ………………

    Source: “The Top Five Regrets of the Dying: A Life Transformed by the Dearly Departing”

    The Top 5 Regrets Of The Dying

    Forward from Huffington Post:
    A palliative nurse recorded the most common regrets of the dying and put her findings into a book called “The Top Five Regrets of The Dying.” It’s not surprising to see what made the list as they are all things that touch each of our lives as we struggle to pay attention to and make time for things that we truly love. Below is the list of each regret along with an excerpt from the book. At the bottom is also a link to the book for anyone interested in checking it out.

    One thing on regret before we get to the list. It’s important to remember that whatever stage we are at in life, there is no need for regret. The process of regret is one that provides nothing but suffering for ourselves as we begin to allow the past to dictate how we should feel now. Instead, we can use the past as a reference point to understand what adjustments we would like to make moving forward. The adjustments do not have to come out of pain, sorrow, regret or judgment, but simply a choice to do things in a different way. We are learning all the time, we can very quickly slow that learning process down by getting stuck in the idea of regret. When it comes to making changes, be at peace with the past and remember that each moment is a new choice.

    ————

    1. I wish I’d had the courage to live a life true to myself, not the life others expected of me.

    “This was the most common regret of all. When people realize that their life is almost over and look back clearly on it, it is easy to see how many dreams have gone unfulfilled. Most people had not honored even a half of their dreams and had to die knowing that it was due to choices they had made, or not made. Health brings a freedom very few realize, until they no longer have it.”

    2. I wish I hadn’t worked so hard.

    “This came from every male patient that I nursed. They missed their children’s youth and their partner’s companionship. Women also spoke of this regret, but as most were from an older generation, many of the female patients had not been breadwinners. All of the men I nursed deeply regretted spending so much of their lives on the treadmill of a work existence.”

    3. I wish I’d had the courage to express my feelings.

    “Many people suppressed their feelings in order to keep peace with others. As a result, they settled for a mediocre existence and never became who they were truly capable of becoming. Many developed illnesses relating to the bitterness and resentment they carried as a result.”

    4. I wish I had stayed in touch with my friends.

    “Often they would not truly realize the full benefits of old friends until their dying weeks and it was not always possible to track them down. Many had become so caught up in their own lives that they had let golden friendships slip by over the years. There were many deep regrets about not giving friendships the time and effort that they deserved. Everyone misses their friends when they are dying.”

    5. I wish that I had let myself be happier.

    ”This is a surprisingly common one. Many did not realize until the end that happiness is a choice. They had stayed stuck in old patterns and habits. The so-called ‘comfort’ of familiarity overflowed into their emotions, as well as their physical lives. Fear of change had them pretending to others, and to their selves, that they were content, when deep within, they longed to laugh properly and have silliness in their life again.”

    Source:
    The Top Five Regrets of the Dying: A Life Transformed by the Dearly Departing

    Reply
    • October 28, 2013 at 8:15 pm
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      Alex – I love that. I really do. It is right on. Thanks for sharing. xo

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  • October 28, 2013 at 7:33 pm
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    I’m so sorry Chris had to make this decision, but I have tremendous respect for the incredibly tough call he made. Love to you all! ❤

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    • October 28, 2013 at 8:09 pm
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      Thank you Sarah! xoxoxo

      Reply
  • October 28, 2013 at 8:21 pm
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    I’VE SAID IT BEFORE AND I’ll SAY IT AGAIN…………..
    CHRIS…YOU ARE FATHER OF THE DECADE! WE LOVE YOU DOWN HERE!!

    Reply
    • October 28, 2013 at 8:56 pm
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      We love you Taylors! Best Aussies ever. xoxoxo

      Reply
  • October 31, 2013 at 8:27 am
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    I completely understand! Dave’s last job required him to travel frequently (although not 80%) and work a lot of long hours even when he was “home”. It was miserable for all of us! He has a much longer daily commute for his new job, but he is home every night and on weekends, and it has made life so much better for all of us. Such hard decisions we have to make as adults/parents…I miss the days of less responsibility!

    Reply
  • March 11, 2016 at 10:46 am
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    Megan, I’m really happy it all worked out for your family. However, this is a life that my children and I have lived, and many others lived, because their fathers (or mothers or both) are in the military. My children however, even though they missed their dad, did not have a lot of these issues. It is very hard to be a geographical single parent, and very hard to miss so many holidays, birthdays and other special occasions and events. Your husband I’m sure made the right decision. I’m also very happy that we have so many special military families who do this for our freedom and safety.

    Reply

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