I know that many Moms, whether you work-outside-the- home, stay-at-home, or work-at-home, struggle with feelings of Mom Guilt. Lately, I’ve been having some major Mom Guilt about my little one being in daycare while I’m at work.
My youngest, who is 3, is the first of my kids to be in daycare. The first two were at home during the day with my ex-husband, who, at the time, worked an overnight shift in order to make that happen. An entirely different kind of guilt was going on in that scenario. We were also living in Florida, where commuting means a 20 or 30-minute drive, not the 60-minute drive that many of us in Atlanta deal with each day. Bottom line: things were different back then.
I love my job and my profession and I feel fortunate to work for an amazing organization. The downside is the long commute from where I live and where my son goes to daycare. There are times that my job can be more demanding than others which add up to longer and more draining days.
That translates to my little one spending long days at daycare. Typically, I drop him off at 7:00 so that I can get to work by 8:00. If I leave at 5:00, I don’t get to daycare until 6:00 (if there are no accidents or issues on the roads in Atlanta, which, you know RARELY happens…ahem). That’s eleven hours that he’s at school and I am seriously struggling with this.
I know, I know. He’s in a safe and fun environment and he’s surrounded by professionals who are taking great care of him. Not sitting in traffic with me, strapped into a car seat and feeling my stress about how long it’s taking us to get home. He’s learning and he’s playing and happy. He’s getting snacks. I’m setting a positive example for him by showing him that his Mom helped to provide for our family and worked hard to be successful in her career.
When we’re at home, I try to give him my undivided attention and spend quality time with him. The weekends, especially, are considered family time.
Logically, I know all of those things, but how can I resolve it in my mind so that I don’t feel guilty? How do other working Moms manage it?