Though you chose the harder of the two sides,
sometimes these choices prove to be the most rewarding.
In general, I think that women should have a career
first because it saves their identify. Women --
much more so than men -- already suffer from being
daughter, wife, mother -- and rarely an individual
in our own
right. This access to a career pre-marriage and
motherhood gives us
some of that identity. If women don't have work
experience before they have children, the chances
of them ever being able to re-enter the workforce
at a later date are very slim.
also think it helps a woman's self-esteem. Mothering
sadly isn't entirely valued in our society and
so women who choose solely this path say something
to the effect of "I'm only a mother"
when asked what they do. I also think that children
don't value their mothers as much when they are
"stay-at-home-moms" -- when asked what
their mother does, most kids will respond "nothing."
I think this also has long-term affects -- for
instance, when your children then go on to have
careers and start making decisions as adults,
they tend to seek advice from their father, who
they perceive they can relate to more. Also --
mothers working benefits the fathers, too -- who
then aren't pressured to be the sole bread winners.
I hope that gets you thinking.