It’s no secret that I’ve struggled somewhat (somewhat? HA!) with the fact that I have to work so much and can’t be with the baby more. It really has thrown me for a loop, this desire I have to be at home with him. It’s not that I don’t want to work, it’s that the desire to be with him is stronger than almost anything I’ve ever experienced.
But here’s the thing. I don’t feel one speck of guilt about working. I don’t question whether I’m a good mom because I’m not with him. My role outside the house doesn’t make me think he won’t love me, or wonder if I’m doing the right thing for him. My struggle isn’t about HIM at all.
It’s about me. It’s utter selfishness–I WANT to be with him. I WANT to spend time with him. To read to him, and play with him, and teach him, and help him grow. I get so much pleasure out of him that I want more time, more of that baby drug. I want to enjoy his babyhood in more than just 2 hour per day chunks.
He’s fine with me working outside the house. He’s so little that he won’t remember it, and even if he did he won’t think he was abandoned. My mom worked her ass off as I was growing up, and I never once thought she wasn’t there for me enough. I have memories of playing with lots of different kids and having lots of grownups who loved me and took care of me. But now that I’m a mom, I know that it had to kill her a little when she would pack me up to take me to my grandmothers or the babysitter so she could work.
And that’s the thing. I don’t feel guilt–I’m doing right by my family and there’s no guilt in that. Instead I feel heartache. I selfishly want that time with him–for ME. For my heart to be filled up with the joy and laughter (and irritation and tears) that this baby brings me. It’s about me wanting him for myself.