By Liz Collin

MINNEAPOLIS (WCCO) — A Twin Cities woman quit her job in July, unable to juggle the demands of her career and the continued uncertainty COVID-19 caused at home. WCCO checked back with the now stay-at-home mom as her choice to walk away from the workforce has settled in.

“You constantly feel like you’re failing at everything. You feel like you’re failing your children, your job, your manager, your team,” Molly McGovern said.

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The 36-year-old was candid when WCCO talked with her just a week after her decision to leave a demanding career as a mortgage manager. She’s held a new title for nearly four months as a stay-at-home mom to an 8-year-old and twin 5-year-olds.

“I expected the regret to set in but it hasn’t yet,” McGovern said. “I have seen a substantial difference in my relationship with the kids. Getting along better, there’s less stress in the house. I’m able to just sit down with them at their level and have a conversation with them.”

McGovern’s noticed she has more patience, a trait her kids have picked up on as well.

“They always seem surprised when I’m able to say yes,” she said.

The summer was spent with more participation and on more home projects as McGovern admits she struggles not following a checklist.

“I’m trying to figure out what at home gives me that same sense of accomplishment,” she said.

Then, there are family finances.

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“It has been a shift. We are on a budget,” McGovern said.

Molly and Carl McGovern feel lucky to be able to even have the option of cutting back to a one-income household.  Still, they’ve scaled back. From where they buy groceries to school clothes for the kids.

As those kids went back to a hybrid model of learning this month, there have been even more lessons along the way.

“As a stay-at-home parent I’m definitely more involved in their education, whether I like it or not,” she said.

She does her best to reflecting a positive attitude so her young students will have the same. McGovern refuses to worry about what might be there when she’s ready to go back to work.

“I anticipate this being my new norm for a while,” she said.

Focused on the present, perhaps more so than ever.

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McGovern said the things she misses most about work include: communicating with adults, critical thinking and team collaboration. Still, she says the positives of her decision to stay home four months ago outweigh any negatives.

Liz Collin