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working mom , mommy guilt, work, mom, family and work balance

working mom , mommy guilt, work, mom, family and work balanceThe Working Mom

Working Mom guilt ~ Finding the balance between work and family is the sweet spot in life where every working mom wants to live. But how do we find the perfect balance between our careers and our family, more importantly, our children? This is a struggle that I think every woman is too familiar with; one that I, myself, have struggled with since giving birth to my first child.

Even if we are afforded the luxury of being stay-at-home Moms,  we are torn and left feeling guilty for not wanting to be in the house, with the children, sans adult conversation for 24-hour increments/ 365 days a year. I’ve been a stay-at-home mom, a work outside of the home mom and a work-at-home mom. All have had their challenges and in every category, I was a working mom. Raising children and maintaining a home is never ending work, even if the perks include spontaneous hugs form adorable munchkins.

As a stay-at- home mom, I wrestled with being overwhelmed with no down time. I found myself having verbal explosive diarrhea each afternoon when my husband walked through the door. I felt disconnected to the outside world and then I felt extreme guilt for feeling like I wanted to be anywhere else. After all, what kind of mother needs time away from her children? Obviously, this was a sign of a major character flaw on my part and I should suffer in silence like a priest trying to purify his soul and purge the impure thoughts. After all, wanting to be away from my children, wasn’t that the most impure thought that a mother could have?

While pregnant with my second child, I temporarily took a job outside of the home. It was only in the afternoon, after my husband was home from work, because I could not bring myself to leave my 1 year old with anyone else (another side effect of extreme Mommy guilt). She was up for precisely 2 hours after I left for work. In retrospect, she probably didn’t even notice that I was gone. She normally played with Daddy from the moment he walked in the door until bedtime anyways, regardless if I were home or not. Yet, every single day that I walked out the door for my 5 hours of work, I felt like I was betraying her in some profound way; abandoning her. The guilt was palpable. The job lasted eight months. From the moment I took the job, I was looking to find something that allowed me to work from home.

This Working Mom wanted to work from home

At six months pregnant, I found a fabulous job that allowed me the flexibility to work from home and make my own schedule.  I was ecstatic. Then I started the job and realized there is only one rung of Mommy guilt worse than leaving your child to go to work and that is sitting in the same house as your child, hearing them call out for you and having to make the decision to tune them out so that you can get work done. The guilt I wrestle with is colossal.

I’ve been fortunate that my job has allowed me to scale my hours back when I need to and increase as I see fit. It’s been a Godsend. Now, the girls are a little older and next year, they will both be in school all day. I decided it’s time to pursue a career that not only fits my lifestyle but also is something I love doing. After all, don’t we all deserve to have it all; the partner, the children, the career and the lifestyle that we want?

I’ve just started a couple new jobs. I still have my original job; editing and tutoring in English but I have added regular freelance writer to my repertoire. I can now be found at SmartMomStyle.Com and The Stir daily plus I am writing my weekly post at Aiming Low. It’s very exciting and absolutely my dream job. As it is starting any new job, it’s taken some concerted scheduling efforts on my part. My husband and I had to sit down, figure out a writing schedule, incorporate the kids schedule and make certain days and times off limits because they are reserved fro family time. It’s only been a week but I can see that the schedule is already making a huge difference in the amount and quality of time that I am spending with my family.  It is also working wonders for alleviating the Mommy guilt.

I’m sure you working moms have many different ways to deal with the Mommy guilt, the schedules and how to make the best out of your time. I’d love to hear your stories and recommendations. I want to have it all and leave that working mom guilt out of it.

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Bye Bye Working Mom Guilt

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stay at home moms, Working moms, work from home , stay at home, moms, full time mom

Over the years, I’ve been asked multiple times if I am a working Mom or a Stay-at-home mom? First off, whether we work out of the home or in the home; part-time, full-time or job share, even if we are stay-at-home Moms, don’t we all work? Aren’t we all working moms? ( Sidebar: The term working mom sounds like we’re hookers with kids. I hate that term.) Don’t we all spend every single day of our lives, selflessly working our asses off for other people?

Working Moms, Say what?

I’ve never met a Mom who doesn’t work. Even if we don’t have a job that pays us, we work our respective tails off. And if we do have a job outside our family duties, we just work our tails off in a different way. But let’s make no bones about it. If you have kids, you are always working. What else would you call cooking, cleaning, wiping asses, wiping noses, telling stories, fighting boogie men, wash laundry, washing dishes, washing babies,laughing at ridiculous knock-knock jokes, making bottles, changing diapers, reading books, instilling morals, teaching respect, self-confidence, bestowing unconditional love when you have nothing left to give, calming fears, cleaning up vomit in the middle of the night, kissing boo-boos, being a cheerleader, a coach, a chauffeur, a dream come truer, a butcher, a baker, a candlestick maker..and that was just Tuesday!

READ ALSO: The One Thing All Moms Have in Common

There’s this big misconception that Stay-at-Home moms lie around on the couch eating bonbons all day, watching stories while organic meals magically appear on the table as children frolic in silence …without beating up their sibling. Yeah, because that EVER happens. I’ve been a stay-at-home Mom for a good part of the past 6 years and not once in that time have I ever had a free moment to sit around and watch stories or eat bonbons. In my dreams, maybe.

Want to know the real difference between stay-at-home moms and work outside of the home moms? I don’t get paid for the asses I wipe and kiss, you do. I never get a break or a lunch in peace, you do. We both work our butts off but you get a commute time to decompress, I don’t. My point is we all work ourselves to the point of exhaustion to do the best we can for our family and we all need a damn vacation. I’d like to sit on an island somewhere, in silence with nothing but the waves crashing the shore, the sun on my face, a fruity drink in my hand and maybe even some of those mythical bonbons I keep hearing so much about.

READ ALSO: Working Mom Guilt

Entire debates are had over this topic. Tears are shed. Women are torn as to whether they should work out of the home or stay-at-home? Hours on end are spent making the decision that will have the greatest effect on the child, the least impact on the budget and the least likelihood of ending in therapy. Much guilt is incurred and it holds us hostage. It is no easy decision but in the end, the joke is on us. Fight one another as we may, each and every one of us who has ever birthed and loved a child are working Moms.

What’s the Difference Between Working Moms and Stay at Home Moms?

 

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