If we made a list right now called, “Things We Didn’t Know We Would Feel In Motherhood,” what would be on it?
Well my initial guess would be several million things.
I never knew a love like the love I have for my child could even exist.
I never dreamed I could be this tired and still function as a human being.
I never imagined I could feel such crushing guilt over everything.
Motherhood is nothing if not an endless guilt factory! You feel badly because you fed your kids crap for dinner three nights in a row. You beat yourself up because you threw them in from of the television for a few hours so that you could accomplish few pressing things. You left them at daycare for ten hours while you went to work.
That last one there is the holy grail of maternal guilt and if you have ever left your tiny little bundle of love in the arms of a near stranger from the hours of 7 t 5 then you know what I am talking about. It’s torture. It doesn’t matter if your kids are happy, screaming or downright clueless you feel guilty for leaving them in the care of someone else. I know I did. In fact when I returned to the workforce and left my twelve week old daughter in the loving arms of another female all day long I was sure the guilt and sadness would suffocate, consume, and destroy me. I thought about her all day long. What was she eating, was she sleeping ok, being attended to as I would attend to her, missing me? What if she wasn’t missing me? Oh my GOD what if she forgets me!
These thoughts were my daily mental script and I know that I am not alone in this. Millions of mothers leave their little ones and go off to work feeling the same way. Being a working mom is beyond hard! Not only do these mighty women combat the working mom guilt all day long, but they have jobs to do, to put first and foremost during business hours. Five days a week they have to push down their emotions and run companies, care for others, perform jobs and do it all. They pump their leaky breasts in bathroom stalls, they rush through traffic to get to their children so that they can shuffle them off to activities, sports, parties, and play dates. They come home exhausted and make dinner in their high heels. Working moms hunch over counter tops helping kids with homework and projects that are due the next day before putting the kids to bed and staying up halfway through the night to catch up on their “homework.” All of this is happening on a good day! Never mind days where the flu strikes, or snow days descend upon them, babysitters cancel, permission slips get forgotten, the list goes on and on. These warrior women don’t stop, they can’t stop. The entire world needs them all of the time. Their kids need them, their job needs them, they are the most productive machines known to mankind.
The working mom is in beast mode all of the time.
The Tale of Mummyhood