Today one of my favorite blogging friends taking over my blog. Not only do we share the same name, but her daughter is a few months older than Julia, so I love reading about what’s to come. I asked Jess to talk about what it’s like to be a WOHM, because I find it so fascinating and different from my own life as a SAHM. Her post prompted me to write about my own experience as a stay-at-home mom, so I’ll share that tale with you next week! Take it away, Jess!
Hey lovely readers! I’m Jess (yep, I officially have the most popular name of the 80s), and I blog over at Being Mrs. Beer. Unlike Jessica, I’m a working mom, so I thought I’d offer you all a glimpse into why, and why it’s right for our family.
I’ve started this post about 5 or 6 times, trying to figure out exactly what it is I want to say. I wanted to give you all a glimpse into my life as a working mom – how it’s different, how I manage it, what my days are like. Then I started thinking about that first part – how it’s different. The thing is, I don’t really know firsthand how it’s different, since being a working mom is all I know.
With the exception of maternity leave, I’ve been a working mom since Abbie was born – I even worked all the up to my induction. Growing up, I always knew I’d work once I had kids. It wasn’t even something I thought too much about – just something I accepted. After all, I spent a lot of time going to college to earn a degree – why wouldn’t I work? It’s always been important to me to support myself, and I never expected to do anything else. So I work.
|Leaving for Daycare!|
As moms, so much of our lives revolve around our kids. What they’re doing, what they’re eating, when they’re sleeping, what they’re playing with…it’s endless. It should come as no surprise that I spend most of my waking moments thinking of my daughter. What might surprise you, however, is that I rarely think of her while I’m at work.
I know, I know. You’re probably thinking, “Don’t you miss her?” Well, yes, of course I do. My desk, covered with photos of her, is the evidence of that. She’s just not in the forefront of my thoughts while I’m at work, and that’s how it should be. After all, I’m not at work to think about Abbie – I’m at work to think about work and do my job. If I was thinking about how much I missed her all day, I’d never get anything done. Plus it’s kind of nice sometimes to not have to think about her.
I know she’s well-taken care of at daycare so I can concentrate on my job.
Is it hard to be a working mom? To be honest with you, most of the time…it isn’t, at least not for me. I know that makes me sound cocky and like I’ve got everything together. I can assure you I am neither of those things. The majority of the time, my house is a mess, Abbie is watching entirely too much TV, and I barely keep up with my laundry, this blog, and my sleep. But in general? It’s not hard – it’s just my life. It’s all I know.
All too often, moms are divided into two categories – working moms and stay at home moms. There’s all kinds of arguments for and against each one – who works harder, what’s better for kids, etc. It’s a never ending cycle, but it’s really just balance. Like everything else, working when you have a family requires balance – but isn’t that the same thing working dads do? They long ago had to learn the importance of spending time with their families and balancing that with providing for them. Are we always able to do everything we want? Of course not, but that’s just life. I try to keep us as organized as possible, and that helps. Abbie’s daycare bag is packed the night before and ready to go. Abbie’s lunch for the following day is usually leftovers from dinner, so that gets packed as we’re putting dinner away. I get my workout in during my lunch at work, or with a quick walk once Abbie’s in bed. Most of the time, I don’t have to sacrifice too much, and I feel like I’ve got the best of both worlds – I get to be a mom, and I get to be myself. Isn’t that what we all want?
So if you were feeling sorry for me that our family needs me to work – don’t. I don’t feel sorry for me. I want to work, and there’s nothing wrong with that. We all set examples for our children in different ways, and what Abbie sees is that both her parents work to both provide for her and spend time with her. She adores her daycare and has so much fun there, and I know she’s well taken care of. That’s what’s important to me – to give her the best I can. For me, that isn’t staying home, it’s going to work. I made my choice long before my daughter was born, and stuck to it afterward – I’m a working mom, and I wouldn’t have it any other way.