Mom guilt, oh man. I thought guilt was bad, but mom guilt is so much worse. Well, at least that’s what it felt like for me. While I was pregnant with my son Calvin, I remember telling my husband that I would never be a stay at home mom. I didn’t feel like I was built for it and I struggled with the idea of having to stay home with a baby. It’s just something I wasn’t sure I could handle with my anxiety.
Fast forward to 3 months postpartum, I had experienced an early delivery, my son was premature, I spent two weeks in the NICU with him, he was later diagnosed with Pyloric Stenosis ( it causes a blockage of food at the stomach outlet) and he had to get surgery, I was depressed and extremely anxious and after experiencing all of this I had to start preparing myself to go back to work. I had no idea how I was gonna possibly go back without feeling like I was choosing my job over caring for my son. Guilt is a feeling that if you allow it to sink deep in your heart and mind it will paralyze you. So I decided that I wanted to stay home and I took back every word I said every time my husband asked me if I wanted to stay home. Unfortunately staying at home was not an option anymore because we couldn’t afford it. I felt more guilt and bitterness, I felt like the worse mom ever.
The time came when I had to head back to work, find Calvin a daycare and figure out how was I going to go about my life moving forward. I remember the night before my first day back to work, I spent the night rocking Calvin to sleeping and crying my eyes out. The next day I got up, got ready and went to work. I could already feel the tears coming the farther I was from him. As soon as I entered the room one of my students greeted me with a hug and an “ I miss you”. She sat at my desk while I put my stuff back into place and she was sharing the latest news on her life. For a moment I forgot why I was sad and remembered why I even wanted to work from the beginning. I love my job, I enjoy working. You see my reason for wanting to stay home came from fear and guilt. Fear that no one would be able to care for Calvin properly and guilt that I was choosing my career over my son. Being a working mom is very often look down upon by society ( one of the many things mom’s judge each other about, but that’s another story) I believe that God has given each one us different gifts and talents to use on this earth. He has given me a heart for youth and working with young girls. Working at a High School gives me that and I love it. Why should I feel like I have to choose between my son and my career? I can have both equally and share my career with my son. I want him to know I value the lives of teenagers, that I want to teach and help them grow. I know that working might keep me from missing out on important moments in my son’s life, but I hope that I would inspire him to pursue whatever makes his heart happy and may he be proud of the work I do.
So to the working mama feeling guilty, you got this! You are no less of a mother because you work. You are no less of a mother because you love your career. You are no less of a mother because you can’t see yourself staying at home. You are no less of a mother because you enjoy alone time. You are no less of a mother for doing something for yourself that inspires you. The working mom and the stay at home mom should be met with praise, two mom’s choosing different ways of working and caring for their families, both making a sacrifice hoping that one day their children would say “ Thank you, mom, for all you’ve done and all that you do.”
Transparent city mama.