Hi, I’m Charmaine and I love my job. And by job I don’t mean running Tots; although I do love Tots. It’s growing and thriving and it’s thrilling. But I’m also a working Mum that has a full-time 9-to-5 job.
I love what I do, and I wouldn’t want to give it up. In fact, my second confession is that, although I carry the guilt every single day of not being with my child on a full time basis, especially when the words ‘stay with me Momma’ tug heavily on my heart; I equally have the guilt that I don’t think I am cut out for it.
I’ve been pondering whether I should confess this, because being a good mom these days seems to be all about the good times, about socializing your child with others, meeting developmental milestones and meeting other Moms for play dates. About preparing organic meals, knowing your child inside and out, understanding their every need, being patient and let’s not forget about looking after our home, partners, extended family and friends!
Do I claim to do all those things well? Not at all; and believe me, I often wish I could take 2 weeks off from my job and fill it full of fun Mommy mornings and play dates – especially on those days when I come home from work looking for the loving arms of my little Angel and find myself facing instead my angry, ‘about to throw that bottle of peppercorns all over the floor’ (and does… sigh) toddler, wondering if it’s because I’m not giving him enough of my time?
Of course, I love my family to bits, and I love my son; he brings me joy beyond anything I could have imagined. It’s my absolute desire to raise a happy, balanced child who can make his way in life successfully. So far, I think my husband and I are doing a good job. I also know that to achieve this and also be the best that I can be, I need to go out and work. Because I like it and I feel I need it. And besides the purpose and personal fulfillment I get from it, it gives me space to get perspective and appreciate my home, family and friends.
When I come home in the afternoon our time together is precious. I have learned to extend my patience way beyond what I thought possible. I’ve developed the knack of finding quick and fun ‘crafty’ applications for cotton balls, straws and egg cartons. I’ve learned to speak and dance like a robot and deal with events that can go ‘one of two ways’. Sometimes bath and bed time is a party, sometimes it’s a battle but at the end of it all, there’s story time and hugs from my adorable little human that just can’t be beat.
I guess being a working mom is about being the best that I can be, for me, for my son, for my husband, my family, my friends, my job and my business (did I miss anyone there?), which means sometimes, my little one gets a store bought gingerbread man with chocolate buttons instead of a home baked one and I think that’s really ok.
This confession is made in the hope that there are other moms out there like me, hoping we don’t have it all wrong. Or am I…?