I made a tough decision at work last week. I decided to withdraw my application from consideration for a promotion. The job is exactly what I’ve been dreaming of, with the client group I’ve been wanting to support, and an amount of travel I consider appealing.
I applied for the job just a few days after finding out I was pregnant and had all intentions of riding the wave and seeing where it would take me. I was determined not to let this pregnancy change who I am: an ambitious, over-achieving, intense, career-focused individual. Why couldn’t I take on a new role, pop out a baby, and then go back to work? I’d be gone for six weeks, max. I’d continue to check my Blackberry and stay in touch with my colleagues and before they knew it, I’d be back and just as focused as before.
Something weird has happened in the past 21 days though. The thought of taking on a new role, with more responsibility and more money just doesn’t seem like a good idea. More surprising, is my sudden lack of ambition to go out and grab life by the horns and wrestle it down until it’s mine. My ambition to pursue any activity outside the scope of my normal day-to-day routine is gone. I’ve become downright flaky.
I used to have strong opinions with animated expressions to back them up. Ask me what I think about something these days and you’re likely to get a blank stare. I just can’t muster the cognitive energy to care about anything other than if I’m going to get 10 hours of sleep.
I don’t know whether these recent developments are the hormones talking or the exhaustion. Will I start my second trimester and be back to my old self? Will I regret not going for the promotion or will I care less and less about my career outside the home until I become one of those moms whose maternity leave turns into a resignation?
Only one thing is clear at this moment: my husband is relieved by my less-intense nature. He just said to me, “Either you’re pregnant or I’m finally rubbing off on you.”