Last week in the comments on my post about working mom decisions, a handful of you talked about your own memories of childhood and what your parents were (or weren’t) able to attend. And while I haven’t had a chance to respond to your comments (someday, I swear!), I did want to more globally address the topic.
I grew up with a working mom (hi mom!). She worked her tail off when I was a kid, and worked it off in a different way when I was an older kid, and then worked it off like a BOSS when I was a teenager. I have vague memories of being dropped off at daycare, of visiting my mom at work, of going to class with her, of babysitters.
What I don’t have memories of is the feeling that she missed anything. In fact, my overwhelming memories are of my mom pulling the superhuman feat of working crazy hours and also never missing anything that was important to me. I’m sure she must have missed things here and there, but in my memory, her record is pretty damn spotless. In high school in particular, my mom was a badass, never missing a single colorguard, band, honor society, or winterguard event of mine…and also making it to almost all of the events of my boyfriend and best friend. While working 60-70 hour weeks. I still don’t know exactly how she did it, and it STILL (actually, even more now) fills me with awe.
But it also gives me a role model. When I start to get wrapped up in my head about how to pull off this working mom thing successfully, I think about my mom. I think about what she accomplished, and how hard it must have been. And how what I think about when I remember my childhood is how involved my mom was, not anything she missed.
This whole working mom thing isn’t easy, for any of us. I know it wasn’t easy for my mom, and it isn’t easy for me. But when I start to worry that I’m not THERE enough, or that I’m going to miss things, I try to think of my mom and remember this: you may not be able to HAVE it all, or DO it all–but you can make decisions so that your kid knows that you are giving THEM your all.
Tags: NaBloPoMo, working mom