I returned to work after my daughter started preschool because of financial reasons and because I had been going a little crazy being at home with her. Don’t get me wrong, I cherish that year that I spent home with her. I learned so much about her and about myself. One of the biggest things that I learned about myself was that I just am not suited to being a stay at home mom. Now that I’m back at work though, I realize that having a 9 to 5 isn’t what I want and an invitation made me realize it.
Why do I really have mom guilt? An invitation.
Now that Addie is in school I feel like she’s got all kinds of events that I’m being invited to. First there was her class Halloween Party, her class Thanksgiving Party and her Christmas Concert. All of these I was able to easily attend thanks to the fact that I work one minute from where she goes to school. Nothing made me happier than to show up at her school and see her excited face when she saw me there. Then I received her class Christmas Party invitation.
As I read through the invitation for the supply list I would have to send her to school with I was excited for another party. Then I reached the day and date and my heart sank. My job is pretty flexible and I’m able to easily pop over to these little parties and return in an hour, all except for one day during the week. Wednesdays are the day that I’m out and about at the local businesses and it always has to be done between 9:30 and 11 am. So you can guess what day and time her class party was scheduled on. My mind immediately went to, “Mom Guilt” mode.
I’ve had twinges of mom guilt since I returned to work but nothing major. There was just something about this one thing that nearly knocked me to my knees. That’s when I realized why I really have mom guilt. I have mom guilt because I want to be able to provide for my family financially while still having the freedom to be there for my daughter whenever it is necessary. I have mom guilt because I realize that I need to work so that I have an outlet outside of being a mom. I have mom guilt because we need me to work for financial reasons.
All of these things boiled down to this. What I really want out of life and out of motherhood is a career that provides me fulfillment and an outlet to express myself while providing for us financially. That career must also not impede with my parenting duties in terms of being able to be there for my daughter’s many events, appointments and any other moment she or I deem important for me to be there. I need and want to be present and available for these events in my daughter’s life.
I realize that there will be many other class parties and that one, in the big scheme of things, probably isn’t going to matter. Right now, it matters to me, though. Understanding where my mom guilt was really coming from has helped me to build a plan that will give me all of the things I listed above. I don’t mind being a working mom, I mind settling as a working mom.
Can you relate to this subject? I’d love to hear the answer to the question: Why do I really have mom guilt?