This post has been mulling in my mind for a while, and may still be in development in the future. For now, I'll just share the random thoughts that have been building in my head. Tomorrow I'm back to work after a 2 week break while hubby was away. As exhausting as it was, it was nice to just be at home.
Working. Being a stay-at-home mom. Doing both...
I never fully understood the challenges that come with being a "working" mother. By working, I mean engaging in the work force outside of the home. When I look back, I think I thought the only challenge came from the tiredness of having to work while also being up with kids through the night.
My perspective has definitely shifted. Work, home, balance. Those three words are used together as if parenting is just another hat that you put on in the many roles you play in life. Except the word "balance" doesn't really fit with parenthood. What I discovered is that when you go to work as a parent, you don't simply clock-out of being a parent the moment you clock-in to work.
When I get ready to go to work for the two days that I work out of home, I have to make sure everything is in place for those two days: snacks, meals, diapers, activities, clean laundry, toys, and on and on. When I come home from work on those two days, the things that I would normally get done are waiting for me to be completed that evening (despite having awesome caregivers who do things like the dishes, and the floors and even put laundry away). Still, motherhood does not "pause" while I am at work. It's not a matter of finding balance.
And for me, that is often really hard. I have realized lately that I have some trouble adapting between situations. I like (okay, I need) to feel fully prepared and understanding of whatever is ahead. And I like the transition between situations to be smooth. This doesn't always happen for me when walking out the door on my way to work, or coming home to cranky, hungry, overtired toddlers. So, needless to say, I struggle with the realities of being a working mother.
I actually don't know any mother who doesn't struggle. Nor do I know if I every will fully resolve the struggle...
Some days it is definitely nice to get out of the house and leave the mess and crazy toddlers behind. But every day I am gone I do miss them. I feel like I am missing out on something. This time alone at home has really shifted my perspective on what it would/could be like to be completely a stay-at-home mom. And that is something I have never actually considered before.
So, there you have my bits and pieces on working as a mother.
Do you have any thoughts you care to share?