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Motherhood is synonymous with guilt.
Whether you work outside the home full or part-time, you’re a stay at home mom, or you are a work at home mom there is guilt of some kind.
I don’t think men feel quite the same guilt that moms do. I wonder why that is?
If you’re home all the time are you showing your children an example of what women can do?
If you’re at work, who is taking care of your children all day? What if you miss their first steps or aren’t there to kiss their knee when they fall off their bike?
You’re always pulled in a million directions and question if you’re doing it “right.”
I’m here to tell you there is no right.
I have always worked outside the home full-time. It was never even a thought that I would do anything other than work full-time outside the home when I had children.
I’m not sure why it never crossed my mind, but I never wanted to be a stay at home mom either. My mother stayed home with us until we were in school. She did some part-time jobs and then worked full-time. She even went back to school to get a Master’s Degree when I was still at home. Thanks to my mom I saw all the ways I could be a mom.
This summer I had my first experience with being a stay at home mom.
With my new job, I work a 9-month contract, so I am fortunate to be off for the summer when my kids are.
Going into the summer I knew that this could present some great opportunities and some great challenges for me. I thrive on a schedule. I was pretty sure I wasn’t meant to be a full-time stay at home mom.
My experiences from previous maternity leaves taught me that I needed work outside the home for my sanity.
Now that we are coming to the close of my first summer off I can say with 100% certainty I was not made to be a stay at home mom.
God bless all of you very special women who can do it and do it well.
I am such a better mom because I work outside the home. I am more patient with my children, I appreciate my time more with them, and I am using my God given talents, while the teachers who teach and care for my children are using their talents with my daughters every day.
I do not feel guilty that my children go to school or a day care center. Those are the right choices for our family. I truly believe we are all given different talents and we should use them.
On the first day of school this year I’ll still be sad that my daughters are getting older. I’ll be sad that their worlds are growing more and more independent of mine, but I’ll be happy too. I know understand the bittersweet feeling that so many moms who can have their summers off with their kids feel on the first day of school.
PEACE and SANITY
I will once again be able to run errands on my lunch- ALONE.
At dinner when we talk about what we did for the day, it will all be new information because we didn’t share every waking moment together.
At 3:30, I will be excited to hear the ramblings of my three-year-old and the ever important tales from 3rd grade instead of counting the hours until bedtime.
I appreciate our summer off together, but it also makes me appreciate the start of the school year in a new way this year.
I don’t think I’m a perfect mom, but I don’t think I’m a bad mom either.
I make mistakes, but we all do.
At this point in my life being a working mom is the right thing. Let’s be clear, financially speaking, I don’t have the option to be a stay at home mom, so it’s good that I like working outside the home.
So whether you work full-time, part-time, inside or outside the home do what is best for you and your family. Try to ignore the mom guilt. I know probably a losing battle, but keep trying.
You are special, you are talented, and you should never compare yourself to the mom down the street. Remember no one is doing it all- it just looks like they are on social media.