Right before I started working full time I made a comment in passing to someone I admire and respect. Someone that was a working mom I looked up to. I asked how I could handle the guilt. She responded in a way that has struck with me. She offered me a second option. She said, “or you could just choose not to feel guilty because you aren’t doing anything wrong.”
That was a moment for me. A moment where what she said made sense and a moment I thought, “Yea!” I knew she was right. Besides I know that I am the keeper and owner of my feelings. This concept was not new. But applying it to working mom guilt has never been as easy as it should be.
There are a million times in each week where I am faced with mom guilt. Where I have to choose between being momma me or professional me. And that isn’t that weird or pivotal of a concept. I am not breaking new ground here as a working mom.
But I am gonna say something that I don’t think a lot of people are. In my home our chores are 50/50. There really is no one parent or sex doing more of one thing or another. And thank God for that that I married a man who sees me as an equal and not only understands my desire to have best of both worlds, but actually encourages it.
Unfortunately, I am finding that society as a whole not so much. The insane amount of pressure that society puts on mothers is insane. It is no secret that this year was rough and I have been forced for most of this year to be mom and dad in my home. We are still kind of there for various reasons. I am okay with it and most of the time when my guy can help, he does.
But some days I can’t handle any more. Sometimes it is emotionally, physically or just time wise. I find that society is way less forgiving of me than they are of my husband. And what I truly mean is they are more forgiving of the father than they are the mother.
Usually when it happens it is disguised as a comment meant to insinuate guilt, “Gosh, I bet your kiddo was so upset that you could not make it for x. They looked so sad.” But guess what their daddy wasn’t there either. But we don’t focus so much on that.
I guess if you are the mom you are supposed to be there. And I gotta be honest I am failing miserably. I can’t be there as much as I want to. I do try though. But sometimes the pukey kiddo take priority over a special show. Or sometimes my work really needs me.
I do try and not feel guilty for that like my friend and mentor said. But I do. I can’t do and be it all. I want to. Trust me. But I am there for my kiddos and they know that. And when I am there, I am there 100%.
I just hope and pray that my girls watching me try and tackle it all that they see why and that they can to reach their dreams. I want to be the best wife, mother and teacher I can be. But sometimes I need my guy to do it. And sometimes that means also shouldering my guilt too.