Story time: last Thursday (10/31) Hunter had preschool and at school they were having a Halloween parade – he was totally stoked about it and about being a hot dog again, I was equally excited. I never did anything for Halloween growing up, so I was exited for him to have his first school party and it being Halloween made it a little extra special for me. Because of his parade I took the morning off so I could go and see him. I’ve never done drop off for school because I work. Yup, I’m a full time working mom who is sometimes at the office before the house is even awake. I don’t get to do things like drop off, room volunteer or other things like that with his class. I’m OK with this and I try not to dwell on it to much or else I’m sure it would make me sad that I can’t do it all and be everywhere.
Back to the story: Wyatt and I were sitting in the lobby waiting for the kids to line up and walk past. Another mom from Hunter’s class comes over and we start chatting – here’s where I find out that I’m doing this whole mom/working mom thing wrong…
- Mom: Who is your child?
- Me: Hunter, he’s a hot dog today (I’m very proud of this btw). Which one is your child? Do you know if they play together? Hunter can’t remember names, but he can tell you the color of his friends shirts.
- Mom: Oh, you’re his mom… I’ve never seen you here before. I think I know his dad and have seen the person who picks him up every day, grandma? My child is XXXXXX and he talks about Hunter at home, even wanted to know if he was going to dress up too. (This makes me feel good – hooray for friends)
- Me: Yes, this is my first time dropping him off this year. Usually I’m already at work and my husband, Ryan, does drop off. The woman who picks him up is his grandma, she just lives down the road.
- Mom: (just looking at me like I’m a crazy person, or so it felt like) Oh, you work – that’s why I haven’t met you before.
- Me: Yes, I work full time and I pick up the boys after the day is done. (Now I’m feeling like a bad mom because I work and I’m not part of the fun stay-at-home-mom club)
- Mom: Huh, well it was nice to meet you.
After this very short chat with her, once she found out that I worked and this is my first time at school for Hunter, she turns back to the other group of moms and schedules a play date with them while the kids are in class but also talks loud enough to let every one near by know what their plans are. It seems like I can’t be part of that group because I work.
At times I think that being part of play dates and daytime outings would be a lot of fun, and lets face it – I would LOVE to have a group of moms from Hunter’s class to get to know and do things with and form some sort of relationship. But the look I got for letting her know that I work full time and this was my first time at school makes me not want to be part of that group. Sometimes I feel like I’m stuck between a rock and a hard place. ¯\_(ツ)_/¯
Oh and according to social media I’m the worst: I had a c-section so I took the ‘easy‘ way out of having a baby – both my kids were/are FORMULA babies (gasp!!) – we have infertility issues and went through a sperm donor, so there is another mark against us 🙂 Everything we’re doing seems to go against the grain of others opinions – personally I’m 100% ok with this. But I know that these things can really bring others down – I don’t want to be that type of person. I know I’m not perfect but I hope that I’ve never made anyone feel this way.
With how much we already beat ourselves up for not being able to do everything for our families we do not need others making comments on the same topics. I’ll be the first to tell you that I’d LOVE to be able to be at EVERY doctors appointment, school event, play date – I really would, but that is just not how our life/family works. Please, don’t try and make me feel guilty because I’m not a stay at home mom or that I have a full time job or that I’ve missed doctors appointments – I already feel bad enough for all those things.
So from one full time working mom to ALL moms out there (stay at home mom, working mom, dog mom, cat mom…..any other moms I missed) – Keep it up, you’re doing amazing. I see you, I know you’re tired and the days/nights get long but you’re killing it! Don’t beat yourself up if you forgot an apple on apple day at school (I did this already) or forgetting it’s Orange Day, don’t beat yourself up for missing a school event, don’t beat yourself up for having a career, don’t beat yourself up for being a stay at home mom and miss working outside the home. We all have our own adventures in life, we all have different paths – seriously, lift each other up. Look at her and say “you’re doing great” “keep it up”.
1 Thessalonians 5:11 “Therefore encourage one another and build one another up, just as you are doing.”