Sunday, January 12, 2014

Working Mom Guilt

Let's get real the biggest feeling every working mom has is guilt. I'll be honest, I felt guilt for the first two or three months, but now about 9 months in of being a full-time working mom I really don't feel much guilt at all. Between just looking at reality and saying "this is the way it has to be," and actually admitting I like being a working mom, helps me to cope with about 50% of the guilt. The other 50% comes from the following rationalization I have in my head that is a mix of personal thought and thoughts from other working moms and mom blogs. Carrying on to explain said rationalization.....

So for some reason, there has always been this ongoing battle between working moms and stay-at-home moms (I recently saw someone refer to them has SAHMs, so we'll run with that. Like they are their own breed or something ;)). It's a true rivalry. Comparable to the fantasy football league in our family (That I am NOT a part of). AKA pointless, yet humorous at the same time. 

This is where the second 50% of my guilt comes in. Self examination like .... Am I any less of a mom because I hand Ruthie off to the best babysitter in the world everyday? Is Jamie or Mallorie any better of a mom than me because she is with their kids 24/7 of their life? Is Ruthie being denied the time she should have with her mom by having me home with her? Does Ruthie feel neglected because I make her go to Shannie's everyday? Is Ruthie not going to behave and have the things I hope to have instilled in her for life? Is Ruthie going to be worse off then kids who do get there mom home with them everyday? It's the kind of guilt that puts you in, as Ron Burgandy said it best, a glass case of emotion. 

So back to that rivalry.......
Of course, "each side feeling that their choice is the better one, each side ridiculing the other because their choice was different, each secretly (or not so secretly) harboring moments of guilt about their choice."
So who did it? Who made the right choice? Who has the more important job? Ummmm.... invalid questions in my eyes. If we can call this debate between these too professions then can we call it for other professions? Okay you tell me .....Which job is more important? The mailman who delivers your mail or your kid's teacher? Exactly. It doesn't even make sense to debate this. We would be screwed without either profession. Mailman, teacher, SAHM, working mom, potato, tomato. 
A blog I read put it best:
"Both moms are working moms. They are one in the same. One chooses to work in a building with others in and around their age group, and the other chooses to work in a home with a younger age group.Both are working. And both have the right to choose where they work…don’t they?"
Each have there own valid reasons. And there are some of the SAHM's reasons I for one who rather not deal with. 

I don't think either side should feel the slight bit of guilt. If you are happy with your choice, rock it. I think I'm to that point now where I am good to admit that I like being a working mom. Yeah, some days completely suck and you snap chat your sisters all day, showing them the cube you are stuck in or you have to text Shannie to ask her how your girl is doing to prompt a picture being sent. Or some nights it absolutely sucks when you had a day from hell at work and you come home no dinner made, a messy house, a workout waiting for you, and a little girl that nothing in the world would make her happy at the moment. 

But for more days then not I am good with going to work. I like the sense of accomplishment it gives me. I like having responsibilities outside the home that I can go deal with for 8 hours and then leave them in my little cube for the night or weekend and go home to Roo and Matt. 

More reasons I have learned I prefer being a working mom over a SAHM. 
-My patience level has dramatically decreased. If I stayed home, Roo would probably be in timeout more often then she should. 
-Waking up at 5:50 makes my days seem twice as long. Sucks on the weekdays, but it makes the weekend a little longer. 
-I like being able to buy things (and try not to feel guilty about it) like my new car!
-The drive into work (Lansing). I love the "me time" I get on my drive. Coffee in hand , usually the radio off, thinking, and watching the sun come up. Oh and can't forget to honk at moms.
-Ruthie absolutely LOVES her time at Shannies. I hear about it all night what she did, her Emma friend, fighting with aubs...haha I love the stories that come from that house.
-That moment we pull into Shannies driveway and Roo says "Here's my Shannies house!!!! My fweinds not here yet mom, but later!!"
-And that moment I open the door to pick her up and she screams "MY MOMS HERE!!!" and I get the bigger hug than the day before.
So to conclude this massive rant of personal feelings I say if your happy with your choice, if you know what you are doing is best for your family, OR if you know what you are doing is best for your own sanity......SO BE IT. No guilt shall be felt. 
And let's stop thinking we're better than each other. 

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