Monday, March 8, 2010
I hate this....Not that there is anything wrong with making every day special, but it sometimes feels like I'm competing for their attention and affection. Like I have to "perform" for them to love me, to be their favorite. The babysitter or teacher or Dad do fun things with them, therefore I can't just sit there a make them fold laundry, right?
I realize this is not unique to working moms....I have divorced friends who have told me the same thing. On their weekend they feel like they can't stay home and clean the house, because then the kids won't want to be with them (or so they feel. )
But really, it's not what I want for my kids. I want them to have normal, routine, commonality. Chores, play with toys, take a nap, make dinner.....Normal......
Fear? Yeah, it's fear. I admit it. I am afraid they will like the babysitter more than me. I'm afraid that they will cheer on the mornings mom has to work. I'm afraid that my absence will make then need/want me less.
1. more organized
2. less fear
3. keeping the normal
Wednesday, March 3, 2010
So a few weeks ago, I met one such friend for breakfast (toting a combined 4 of our 6 kiddos...). French bistro, French toast, French fruit, French Hot Cocoa.....Let the warm fuzzy feelings flow.
But warm and fuzzy I was not. Frazzled was more like it. It was the week before starting my full time job. Emotions were raw---the usual suspects present---doubt, guilt, anger, anticipation, fear...the whole gang was there......But then she said it....
"You know, this is your gift. Your family needs something right now and you can give it to them. Working right now if your gift to them. Not every mom can give that."
I don't work for bigger house, a boat, extravagant vacations, or jewels. I work to pay off bills that burden us. To help build some security and "cushion" for crisis. I work so my husband can build his career and eventually take over all of this need. I work because when we prayed about what to do, my Heavenly Father sent me this opportunity and the Spirit confirmed I should take it. This is truly my gift to my family.....one of many, I hope, but the one that was needed now.
This gift is for you......
1. God-sent friends.
2. Viewing work as a gift to my family.
3. Good food.
Wednesday, February 24, 2010
I've cried a lot lately. I think as working mothers (or mothers in any situation) leaving our kids is heart-wrenching. It's left me searching for reasons, explanations. Why did we feel so strongly that I should take this job right now? Why am I having to leave my kids to go care for others and work for others? Why can't I get out the door without feeling like my heart is breaking?
Then I found this old article from the Friend. It's bit of a bio of Henry B Eyring, but something in it grabbed me. Hard. And stuck.
President Kimball spoke at President Eyring's mother's funeral. She had apparently been ill leading up to her death and regarding this, President Kimball said, "God loved her, and He was polishing her."
So simple and so true. I'm very rough. I don't shine. I don't sparkle. But, lately every time I leave my kids, my appreciation for them and my role as their mother sparkles more. When I have a bad day and am alone in car leaving work, my reliance of my Heavenly Father shimmers more. When I have that lonely lunch hour to myself and my thoughts drift to scriptures and true priorities, my appreciation for his Great Plan gleams more. When I rush around in the evening packing lunch bags, diaper bags, work bags, school bags, sports bags, and filling crock pot bags, then collapse into bed too hyped up to sleep (therefore I have eye-bags) I am forced to pray more, ask for Divine help more, and my reliance on Him twinkles more.
So, I accept that I am a working mother right now being polished.
Because He wants me to shine.
Friday, February 12, 2010
"Ugh," I think, silently, to myself.
"Open wide," I say.
"Drat," I say, out loud.
Of course, it's today. Valentine's party at school, Brutus running out the door for an early, can't be missed meeting, me on my own getting The Crew dressed, fed, and dropped off.
The Scientist begins to cry. He HATES to miss school, even on non-party days. I resist the urge to cry (Points for Mom) and go into highly-efficient-lets-figure-it-out mode. 15 minutes later we're all out the door, heading to a walk-in clinic. (Thank you positive test! Thank you Amoxicillin!)
What to do with contagious boy?!?!
Panic? No. Hostile frustration? Not I. Not now. (Maybe later.)
I call Nana...
This is really the first time in over a decade of marital bliss that we've lived near family. And right now, I'm ecstatic about that fact. Nana's breathless (exercise bike?) but happy to have a potentially contagious boy and his sisters come play until mommy can figure things out at work. The Crew is happy. Mommy's relieved.
Nice Nana's Rock!!!
Wednesday, February 10, 2010
Go To Bed...(Subtitle -- Why I'm awake at this hour hunting for a picture of The Scientist for his school project.....
"Working mothers are guinea pigs in a scientific experiment to show that sleep is not necessary to human life."
Amen, Anonymous, Amen......
Tuesday, February 9, 2010
Seriously....that's what she said. No, I didn't rip her head off....but I wanted to. I didn't comment on the audacity and impossibility of her statement...but I wanted to.
Actually, it made me think of my helpers....Those wonderful people who are there when I can't be. Who don't think twice about wiping my kids noses or booties. Who give treats, hugs, and reassurance...to the kids and mom.
I have been amazingly blessed in this department. My first babysitter with The Scientist volunteered for the job. The second, too. Then on to preschool...I loved those teachers.....
Pretty Princess's first sitter I didn't know well, but was told by the Spirit to call her. (Yelled at my the Spirit, actually) Later I found out that they were struggling to make ends meet and what I offered to pay her was just the amount. She was awesome. It's not everyone who will roll out of bed, pregnant and nauseous to let someone else's toddler wander in at 7:00am.
Don't even get me started on the back-up list. Those people you can call when your regular arrangements are a no-go. I have been blessed with friends who would answer their phone at 6:30am and happily tell me to drop off my little one at 7:00am. I once had an work emergency come up in the evening and Brutus was stuck at school. I ended up taking The Scientist and a couple of jars of baby food (I picked up on the way, since we hadn't even been home yet) to a friends house--she then fed him and took care of him until way in the evening.
Now I am blessed with a neighbor who looks forward to Fridays with the girls, a great friend who sends me notes about Sweet Angel's day, and an amazing 16 year old who loves to spend a few days a week during the summer taking care of 3 energetic kids. (No kidding..this girl actually calls me and volunteers to watch my kids.....)
Do any of them replace me? No, they never could. At one point I feared that. But I've learned that it's not possible. No matter where I am, I'm the mommy....Full-Time Mommy
Monday, February 1, 2010
So...while I'm sure the ranting and venting will take place, I am going to make an effort to turn this into something more positive. Great experiences. Supportive comments. Scriptures. Articles. Talks. Anything I can find. Maybe there is another working LDS mommy out there that needs this too.
So...here goes tonight's find.
"As mothers, perhaps our most important responsibility toward our children is to love them, to teach them, and to nurture their spiritual and emotional growth. Fortunately, we do not usually bear that responsibility alone, for the Lord gave that privilege to men and women alike. (See D&C 68:25, 28; Moses 5:12.) This, then, is a first priority.
The temporal welfare of the family is another responsibility that men and women share. From the beginning, women have worked to help support their families. After Adam and Eve were driven out of the Garden of Eden, “Adam began to till the earth, and to have dominion over all the beasts of the field, and to eat his bread by the sweat of his brow, as … the Lord had commanded him. And Eve, also, his wife, did labor with him.” (Moses 5:1; italics added.)"
Jan Underwood Pinborough, “Working Double-Time: The Working Mother’s Dilemma,” Ensign, Mar 1986, 22
I'd never really thought of this before. For thousands of years mothers have worked beside fathers to provide temporally for their children. It's just been relatively recently that the choice to share this role involved the possibility of leaving home for work.
So...Could I stay home and work? I could probably find something. A home-business, teaching music, there would be a couple of options. But, I felt very strongly about seeking the education I did. I prayed about it--a lot. At various times since finishing graduate school I have had those "TaDa!" moments. My education has allowed be to contribute to providing for my family, in ways that would NEVER have been possible otherwise. I'm not talking luxury here; I'm talking the basics.
Are you a mom like that?
Give yourself a high five (or some M & M's)for getting that education...
Do you know a mom like that?
Give her a hug (or some M & M's) and tell her she's awesome.
You can read the whole article here. Give yourself a hug tonight. You're fabulous.