Our newest column is an exciting one! This is a sacred space for Moms to emote, share thoughts, feelings, concerns, stories, reflections, ideas and potential solutions. This is a semi-private place for the Mom community to connect, support, process, brainstorm and exhale it all, without censorship, guilt, fear, judgment or the need to unveil identity.
We are pleased to invite you to submit to ANONYMOM.
Notes from ANONYMOM:
What’s wrong with me? I should be happy! All I ever wanted was to be a mom. Yet here I am, two beautiful children, a loving husband, and living a comfortable life as a stay-at-home mom, but I want more.
I don’t know, maybe it’s an identity crisis, some type of midlife crisis, or just plain bored of my routine life. I love being a mom, but let’s face it-I didn’t need to work so hard all those years earning a doctorate degree to now spend my days cleaning toilets, folding laundry, and driving kids to their endless list of activities. When I think about my role in life right now, it feels like I have no life, I only exist to make the lives of my family run smoothly.
So easy answer, right? Just go back to work. I’m fortunate enough to have a profession where I could find a job without having to search very hard. I even have the option of potentially working in a lesser position that doesn’t pay as much but would give me less responsibility and more flexibility in my schedule. So, what’s stopping me?
I think I’m scared of the fact that I wouldn’t be able to take care of everything that I take care of now. As a stay-at-home mom, I’m more exhausted and overworked than I ever was working a “real” job. If I add another thing to my plate, I may just break! I’m a self-proclaimed control freak, going back to work would most likely mean I would need to ask for help, and that scares me more than anything! We don’t need to psychoanalyze my childhood here, but let’s just say I’ve learned not to rely on others.
Not to mention the fear of missing out on milestones or not giving enough time to my kids. They grow up so fast and I want to be there to make happy childhood memories with them. Am I really giving them amazing memories by staying home though? How will they remember me? Most likely as tired and cranky. So, the million-dollar question becomes ‘will I be more, or less tired and cranky if I go back to work’? Will I somehow have more to give of myself by creating an identity outside of the home? Will bringing home a paycheck change my sense of worth and outlook on life?
Sorry, I don’t have the answer. I do know the working part is inevitable though. Working as a stay-at-home mom or working in my profession. Work is work, tired and cranky is part of that equation. There’s no magical answer, but maybe the trick is balance. I need to find and acknowledge the joy and happiness in life to balance whatever work I’m doing. Even if that means looking for joy in the giant pile of dirty dishes sitting in my sink!