There is no doubt that being a working mom is difficult. Taking care of kids is a full-time job all on its own. Adding on another career on top of that is very difficult and something that a lot of women experience at some point in their lives. There are many women who are happy in their careers but also want to have kids. They don’t think they should have to pick one or the other so they manage to juggle both. However, enjoying motherhood and enjoying your career does not make doing both of those things at the same time easy.
When it comes to being a working mom, there are a lot of challenges and rewards that come with it. You have to sacrifice time with your kids that you will never get back. However, you also have an extremely rewarding career. There are so many different emotions that arise with working moms and it can be easy to feel like you are making all of the wrong decisions. However, you can survive life as a working mom. You just need to know what you are getting yourself into. So, here are 20 truths about being a working mom.
20 It Will Be Hard
The first thing you should know about having kids and a career is that it is going to be hard. There will constantly be early mornings where you struggle to get your kids ready and to daycare while still making it to your work on time. Sometimes you will feel like you are wasting time in an office while your kids are at home playing without you. You’ll get home late and still have so much to do. Working moms usually feel exhausted, but if you can get into a good routine the lifestyle is totally doable. There are so many working moms now who are showing that hard work is worth it in order to get the things we want in life.
19 Weekends Lose Their Meaning
Some jobs don’t really have weekends and parenthood is one of them. As a mother, you will never stop working and taking care of your kids no matter what day of the week it is. However, sometimes you have work from your career job as well that carries over into the weekends. Once you have kids in the mix it makes getting your normal weekend work done take way longer than usual. When it comes to being a working mom, you can pretty much forget about having every weekend off. You will be lucky to get a few days off every year.
18 No More ‘Lunch Break’
As a working mom, you can pretty much say goodbye to long lunch breaks with coworkers and at least an hour of relaxation and downtime. As a working mom, any free time you have needs to be utilized to its fullest potential. All the moms I know spend their lunch breaks going grocery shopping, picking up their kids from school and dropping them off at daycare, or running errands and simply scarfing down food as they drive. When you become a working mom, you will master the art of eating on the go. And, while it might sound hectic, you’ll feel very productive.
17 You Will Feel Bad For Leaving Early
Before you had kids, you may have been the worker who would always stay late and dedicate your time for the good of the company. However, as a working mom, you are out the door right when you get off. It’s easy to feel bad about this or to worry that your coworkers are judging your work ethic. But, getting home to your kids becomes a major priority in your life and maintaining that work-life balance is necessary. This means setting strict deadlines for yourself and leaving the office right when you are scheduled to get off. There is no need to feel bad for leaving earlier than you normally do because your priorities are shifting now as a mom.
16 You Will Still Be Working Late
According to The Balance Careers, working moms don’t always know how to manage their personal energy levels. They are constantly trying to be superwoman at home and at work. Because of this, working moms may look like they are leaving the office before anyone else, but they will be the ones staying up late at night, past their child’s bedtime, in order to get more work done. However, figuring out ways to rebuild your energy as a working mom is important. Understanding that there will be times where you can do it all and other times where you just don’t have the energy is important to learn.
15 You Will Miss Out On Milestones
One of the hardest parts about being a working mom is knowing that your kids are having experiences that you are not apart of. You will never be a “room mom” who volunteers her time in their kids’ classrooms. You will miss most of the field trips they go on, and all the hours spent in daycare or with a nanny are hours that you will never get back with them. The key to coping with missing these milestones is weighing the pros and cons of being a working mom. Although no good mom wants to miss out on special moments with her kids, understanding why going to work also benefits your family is important.
14 Sick Kids Will Ruin You
Growing up, my brothers and I were always sick. And when I say sick, I mean strep throat, ear infections, sinus infections, the stomach flu, colds, and so much more. We would be out of school for weeks at a time during cold and flu season. Luckily my mom was a stay-at-home mom and so we always had someone to take us to doctors appointments and watch us while we were home. However, as a working mom, sick kids will ruin you. The amount of time you will have to take off of work to pick up your sick kids from school will be more than you want to count. And the number of times you send your sick kid to school because you can’t miss work will be high too. It’s a tough balance, and the best solution is for your kids to wash their hands constantly and try to prevent getting sick as much as they can.
13 You’ll Learn To Trust Your Child’s Caregiver
Trusting the person you have put in charge of your children will be key to your sanity. It is important to invest in someone you believe in and trust fully. It may be hard, in the beginning, to leave your kids when they are little or to go back to work when they are sick. But, if you have a nanny or babysitter that you believe in, you will know your children are in good hands. This will allow you to go back to work and be productive instead of just worrying about your kids the whole time. Much of being a working mom is having people that you can count on. So, find a caregiver you can trust because when you do, your life will become so much easier.
12 Constant Feelings Of Not Being Good Enough
According to Finding Joy, moms are really good at hiding their emotions. It can be easy to put on a brave face for your kids or even your boss and coworkers. However, as a working mom, you will often feel like you are not good enough. You are dividing your attention in half when it comes to motherhood and your career. Therefore, it is common to feel like you are not giving 100 percent to either thing. You want to be the best mom you possibly can but you also want to be the best worker that you can be. But, when you are constantly being pulled in both directions, feelings of not being good enough are inevitable sometimes.
11 Walking In Your Front Door Will Be The Highlight Of Your Day
According to ScaryMommy.com, seeing your child after a long day of work is the highlight of every working mom’s day. Whether you are picking your kid up from daycare or walking into your own house, seeing your child after all those hours away from them is so heartwarming. Honestly, these moments are what hold many working moms over when times at the office get difficult. There will be days when you don’t want to leave and go to work, but knowing why you are working and always keeping your kids in the front of your mind will make it all worthwhile.
10 Housework May Be An Issue
People were not lying when they said being a stay-at-home mom was a full-time job. With the cooking, cleaning, laundry, errands, and grocery shopping, it almost seems like there’s not enough time to actually take care of your kids. However, when it comes to working moms, juggling your share of the housework and errands can be a challenge. If you have a husband or a partner who also works, balancing normal chores with work and parenting can have its difficulties. But, according to Thebalancedcareers.com, simply having a schedule and an organized plan in place can make a big difference.
9 Leaving Your Kids Is Heartbreaking
While not every depiction of a working mom is accurate, for the most part, moms have a hard time leaving their babies and going back to work. That’s not to say that they aren’t excited for the mental shift and a slight break from constantly chasing after kids. According to Scarymommy.com, not all moms feel guilty about going back to work or leaving their baby in daycare. However, guilt is a lot different than simply missing your baby and being sad to leave them. But it does get easier as time goes on and you fall into a new routine as a working mom.
8 Society May Judge You
In this day and age, it can seem nearly impossible to not get judged by society for anything you do. When it comes to parenting and motherhood, it is no exception. Often times mothers are judged the hardest because so many people have opinions on the best way to raise a child. It is best to acknowledge this early on so that you can learn to brush off the judgment from society. Some people may think being a stay-at-home mom is too simple. Others will say that being a working mom isn’t fair to your child. There is no escaping the opinions so the best course of action is to do what feels right for you and for your family. When you are confident in your decisions you don’t need the approval of others.
7 You May Have To Pump At Work
According to The Huffington Post, The Affordable Care Act, the 2010 healthcare law better known as Obamacare, actually requires employers to allow women to pump breastmilk at work. A “reasonable break time” must be given to any employee under the law. This is an amazing thing for working moms everywhere because the struggles of breastfeeding and pumping are so real. I have a friend who just had a baby and had to leave class periodically just to release breast milk into the bathroom sink because she was producing so much. However, with proper pumping equipment, working moms could actually return home with milk for their baby!
6 Childless Coworkers Won’t Understand
You can’t expect your coworkers who don’t have kids to understand your shift in priorities. According to CNBC.com, there has become a sort of division in the workplace when it comes to parents and singles. Coworkers end up arguing about whose off-work activities are more important. While as a mom you may be thinking that there is nothing more important than your kids, but coworkers who don’t have families yet are just not going to see things the same way. They won’t understand that commitment and instant bond that a mother has with her child. As a working mom, once you understand that you don’t have to prove your priorities or commitments to anyone else, you will be way less stressed in life.
5 Other Moms At The Office Will Intimidate You
The Huffington Post explains all the different ways that working moms can stand out at work without sacrificing their sanity. Many aspects come into this, such as setting a strict deadline of when you need to leave, wearing a smile, and knowing the value that you bring to the office. However, it can be easy to feel less than the other working moms who appear to be doing more than you are. Perhaps the other moms at the office are showing up before you, leaving after you, and still managing to brag about their amazing and smart kids. It can be intimidating, but you have to realize that their life is not your life. Prioritize what is important to you and what works for your family.
4 People Will Notice A Change And Won’t Like It
Your coworkers may be used to you being the party animal who would buy rounds of drinks for everyone and never missed a Friday night dinner. Maybe you were the coworker with a dirty mouth who thrived off of gossiping about your boss. Or, maybe you would simply show up early with donuts for the office. Whatever your role at work may have been, people don’t like change and women change a lot when they become mothers. Their kids become their priority and going above and beyond to befriend your coworkers isn’t on the top of their list anymore. While your friends at work may not like this shifting dynamic, that is honestly not your problem.
3 You’ll Feel Guilty For Wanting To Keep Working
It may sound strange, but some people actually enjoy working and love their job. When you are doing something that you are passionate about and getting paid for it, it only makes sense that you wouldn’t want to stop that or give it up when you become a mom. However, it can be easy for working moms to feel guilty for putting their work before their kids. People often say that mothers are beyond selfless and sacrifice their desires for their kids. However, your kids deserve you in your happiest state. And, if working makes you happy then that’s what you should do. Of course, balance is key and you should make enough time for kids and work. But, once you have a good schedule, don’t feel guilty for simply doing your job and enjoying it.
2 You’re Child’s Growth Will Motivate You
According to ScaryMommy.com, there are a lot of surprising aspects of being a working mom that will actually give you hope. When it comes to dropping your child off at a daycare in the morning, it can be hard, and seeing your child cry for you is difficult at times. But, when it comes time to pick them up sometimes they don’t even want to leave. This growth and maturity that occurs in one day while you were at work is incredible. Moments like these are what often makes working moms proud. Their child is growing and you being separated from them for a few hours is what encourages this motivation. So, use your child’s growth as motivation for your own.
1 You’ll Gain Mad Respect For Stay-At-Home Moms
There is this common misconception that stay-at-home moms are viewed as less than or weaker than working moms. Society likes to paint this picture that working moms work harder and have more drive. However, as a working mom, you will understand that that is not true. You may feel bad about leaving your child during the day, but at the same time, you are relieved and excited to start using your brain in a different way. Constantly exerting 100% of your physical and emotional energy watching your child is beyond exhausting and working moms truly appreciate the shift in dynamic and atmosphere that they get when they leave for work. However, with that comes an appreciation for the women who don’t ever get that.