6.16.2015

I'm Failing at this Working Mom Thing


I wish the title of this post was just click baiting, but it's not. I'm failing. Hard. Somehow returning to work full-time has made me feel like a half-assed employee, and a half-assed Mommy. I only have one kid and I'm wondering, how do full-time working moms do it?!



I returned back to my job (which I love!) at the beginning of a hectic season. My position involves coordinating a program that provides low-income families with fresh produce, primarily during the summer months. This meant that my maternity leave between December-March could not have been better timed, but since returning my to-do list has been miles long. New clients have gone weeks- weeks! without getting a return phone call, because there simply aren't enough hours in my day. I have called off sick more times than I would like to admit, 1. Because I genuinely haven't felt well, but 2. Because I think my not-feeling-well is a psychosomatic response to the stress and pressure I've been putting on myself.

I have been so fortunate to have someone close to us watching my sweet baby boy, but the future of this arrangement is uncertain and I'm left wondering how does anyone afford childcare in this day and age?! I can't quit and stay home with Charlie, because...student loans. And I have no idea how to continue to work and pay for childcare because...student loans. 

On top of this, my daily commute is about an hour which just feels as though I'm adding insult to injury because I generally leave before Charlie is up and at 'em and get home just in time to put him to bed. I struggle to maintain a regular pumping schedule, which has noticeably affected my supply. I just...I'm at a loss.

I know being a Mama is hard regardless of whether you spend your days under the harsh glow of the office industrial lighting, or in the jungle of spit-up rags and teething toys that many SAHMs call home. And I know whining about my own situation doesn't make the situations of other Mommies any less real. 

I hate that I'm at a job I love, but am only able to give what feels like 50% of myself.

I hate that I'm not home all day snuggling with my baby, but know that I'd go stir crazy if I actually was a SAHM.

I hate that I'm using the wee morsel of time I've carved out for blogging to complain, rather than wax poetic about how freaking awesome being Charlie's mom really is.

I hate that nearly six months in, I still haven't figured out this Mom gig.


15 comments:

  1. Jenn GrandlienardJune 16, 2015 at 9:39 AM

    Oh girl we're all still figuring it out!! You are NOT alone! I just got the surprise yesterday that Knox lost 14 ounces cause my supply has probably been lost and I had no idea until I realized his diapers were fitting different! It feels like whenever we feel like we've finally got this, something new comes up and totally changes the game! I'm not a working mom...but I feel your frustration with loving motherhood but also finding it to be the most difficult thing I've ever done.

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  2. Mine is 7 months, so my mat leave is another 5 months, I'm already dreading it! I love my job, but I don't want to leave her! I also will have close family to care for her, but I'm gonna miss her so much! If I could earn enough working from home, I would, but right now, I can't, not while taking care of her too. The good news is, I do love the job!

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  3. I feel like there's no winning because while you're at one thing, you're constantly thinking of the other. I think you can do it, though. I haven't read your blog for very long, but you seem like a very strong woman and I think Charlie's got a great mom.

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  4. It's hard! Some times will be better than others. The childcare issue is definitely a hard thing to work out, because it is so very expensive. And you want to trust someone with the most important little person in your life, and it seems like with trust comes costing an arm and a leg. After two babysitters that didn't work out for various reasons, we finally have a home daycare that is reasonably priced and in a good location for us. I find that home daycares are a great and cost effective place between just someone watching children and expensive facilities. Also, don't be afraid to use temporary hardship forbearance for your loans!

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  5. Being a mom is hard, no matter if you work, stay at home, do both, etc. I wish I could tell you it gets easier, but there is always an obstacle to overcome. I can say, however, now that I have two (5 and 2), the first year of the first child is the hardest. After that, things become routine and comfortable. Hang in there!

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  6. I know these feels, love! And they suck! But you are NOT failing, you are finding your balance, and that takes longer than six months.

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  7. Aww poor Knox...and poor Mama! I know all too well how sucky it feels when your baby isn't gaining weight like they're supposed to. If I hear one more comment about my "skinny" or "bony" baby, I'm going to scream! I think the biggest challenge in doing the working mom (or mom, in general) thing is maintaining a positive mentality. At the end of the day, I have to say to myself, "Did I do the best I could at work today? Did my baby feel loved?" If both those answers are yes, I'm doing okay :)

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  8. That's so fortunate that you get a year of leave! Going back is no picnic, but I'm also fortunate to have a job I love and awesome co-workers. It would be sooo much harder if I didn't have the support that I do, and it sounds like you will too :)

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  9. Thanks Breenah! <3 You're so right. And if I'm being truly honest with myself, sometimes staying home all day with him is more exhausting than going to work! So at least I have that to look forward to. Haha!

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  10. Oh girl, I am all over that forbearance! Haha You're right, the sadness and Mommy guilt kind of ebbs and flows. I have about a once a week breakdown (which is what triggered this post) and then I pull myself back up, head back into the office and do my thing. I sometimes just have to remind myself that this distance is harder on me than it is on Charlie. He's doing great and doesn't even realize I'm gone, so as long as he's happy that's all that should matter :)

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  11. Thanks Meagan <3 I so appreciate your Mama wisdom. I like to hang onto these little nuggets of Mommy truth for the hard days :)

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  12. Thanks, Mama <3 Seriously, though. How have you done this THREE times?!

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  13. I know, I feel lucky to have the year, but I'm still thinking of petitioning to make mat. leave 18 years :p jk!

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  14. I bet it'd still go by too quick!

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