Wanted: Caffeine (and maybe a little extra free time)

Wow. Crazy week. Hence the lapse in posts.

One of the toughest things about being a working mom is the constant conflict between my job schedule and my kids’ activities.

In days of old, parents didn’t attend class parties, for example. Now they’re expected to show up for grade-school Valentine’s Day, Christmas and other festivities. The worst part is at the end of the party, when the other moms are taking their kids home.

“You’re not taking her?” Tootie’s puzzled teacher asked.

I looked at my watch.

“It’s only 2:15. I have to go back to work. Tootie needs to go to aftercare, just as usual.”

The other morning, my daughter informed me that she wants to be a car rider.

“Honey, I have to work,” I told her. “I can’t leave that early.”

I’m lucky enough to have spent more than 16 years in a career I love. But even if I loathed my job, Hubs and I couldn’t afford for me to quit it. We need two incomes. He was a divorced father when I met him, with financial obligations to my stepchildren. Add two more kiddos into the mix, and, well … we all know kids are expensive. But they’re worth every hard-earned penny.

So Hubs and I take advantage of the hours after work, sitting outside on the porch or deck, laughing at the children’s play. And yeah, I’m guilty of letting them stay up a little later once daylight savings time arrives. It’s just too nice outside to go in.

I also take care not to overschedule the kids. One activity at a time. That leaves us time on weekends to be a family, to do things together without the pressure of racing to and fro from one game/party/recital/competition after another.

My job does allow the kids a glimpse into the lives of others. They’ve heard Hubs and I talk about the aftermath of hurricanes, tornados, fire. They’ve seen his pictures and heard me talk about my stories. I hope all this instills in them both empathy and a desire to make the world around them a better place.

One thought on “Wanted: Caffeine (and maybe a little extra free time)

  1. My opinion. Happy Mom = Happy Family. You are the best role model for your family and children if you are doing things that are satisfying and make you happy. If work makes you happy… you kiddos will remember a happy mommy. Better than a mommy staying at home (and grumpy)!

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