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Bobby called this morning… he was at a gas station, and his little red car was refusing to start. So we had to have it towed to the nearest mechanic.

By 3pm, the verdict was in. The engine is kaput. The mechanic guy estimated ~$3500 to replace. Um, yeah, that would be as much or more than the car’s worth…

So we find ourselves in a predicament. I’m an unemployed slacker. We already have a monthly deficit. We now have one car that operates and one that’s almost certainly dead. Hmmmm….

Oh, and let’s not forget the baby situation.

The numbers tell me that it’s time for me to suck it up, push the “pause” button on the family (again), and go back to work. I don’t mean a random little job – I mean go back to the “real” working world. Things would be financially easy then… we would have enough to cover our month, plus resume the debt snowball, we would replace the Beamer with a more gas-efficient alternative, and we would go back to life as usual.

But everything in me knows that this is NOT what I should do. It’s just not. There has to be a way that we can do it all – be ok financially, have a family, and not put our babies in daycare. I want to be the kind of mom that my mom was. There’s a way – we just haven’t figured it out yet.

Bobby’s sitting in the office with the door closed, editing weddings that are overdue and sweating the money. Am I being selfish by not working a “corporate America” job? Am I taking advantage of my loving and supportive husband? We’re equals, partners, and I don’t feel like I’m pulling my weight. I want to be a mom… a stay-at-home mom. But I also want to be an equal, contributing partner. I don’t want all the financial responsibility and ensuing stress to be on Bobby’s shoulders. Despite all my feminist learning and education, I want my primary focus to be our children. Can you be a feminist stay-at-home mom? Is that an oxymoron?