Vocation, vocation, vocation!

April 6, 2009 at 7:03 pm (Uncategorized)


A couple of years ago I went through a rough period. I had dislocated my shoulder for the eight bazillionth time (that might be a slight exaggeration…) and several orthopedic surgeons told me that I either needed to have surgery immediately or risk having debilitating arthritis in my shoulder by the time I turned fifty, or maybe earlier. I went through with the surgery, even though it wasn’t a convenient time, what with being the primary caregiver to a three-year-old and a one-year-old. (When exactly IS a convenient time to have surgery you might be forgiven for thinking…well, not then, anyway). We hired a part-time nanny to help us get through my recovery period when I wasn’t allowed to lift anything more than five pounds, and we all survived, although not exactly unscathed.
Hindsight is 20:20, as they say, and in retrospect I realize that I was actually depressed. And why not? I wasn’t able to do my job. What a lousy feeling that is. I really empathize with the poor folks getting laid off in this rotten economy; it’s terrible not being able to realize your vocation.
It took me a while, but that time helped me to figure out that motherhood is my vocation. While I was recovering, I had a lot of time to myself while our sitter played with the kids at the park or at the beach. I spent that time thinking about what I should be doing. I started looking for jobs, mostly in the legal field, which was my former profession. And I was miserable. Absolutely stinking miserable. Maybe you can attribute it to my not being healthy, which, boy, that’s also a rotten feeling, but I think it was something deeper. I think I was accidentally ignoring my vocation, which is to parent my then two, but now three, children.
So no wonder I felt lousy.  Ignoring your vocation, your calling, is ignoring God.  Not a good idea.  And once I figured it out, I felt a lot better.  Like, monumentally.  That’s not to say that I won’t re-enter the workforce at some point in the future, or that I don’t have other things that I’m doing besides being a mom. But it is to say that raising our three children, and raising them well, with all that that entails, is and should be my primary focus.
So in a weird way, I’m grateful for that injury. I learned something important about myself and my purpose for having gone through it.

ps.  Like the picture?  Me, as seen through the eye and lens of a three-year-old.

pps.  Happy Holy Week!


1 Comment

  1. New Mama said,

    I have no plans to ever re-enter the workforce. If I find something I’m passionate about (or if I have no choice, of course), fine, but otherwise I find being home so fulfilling and valuable that I see no reason to work outside the home.

    Honestly, I think that our quality of life would suffer so much if I had to work at a “real” job. I do so many things around here to keep our household running smoothly, to save us money, to just BE here for things like repair people and doctor’s appointments. Even if Henry were to go to school full-time I know I could fill up my days with taking care of my family.

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