Being a Mom is sometimes the hardest job in the world. Soldiers on survival training go through stages of chronic sleep deprivation, physical hardship, surviving on emergency rations with minimum chance to attend to personal hygiene needs. We Moms recognise times when we also faced survival training.
But being a Mom can also be the easiest job in the world: it feels as if we are hardwired to care and nurture our babies and to create a warm and comfortable home. In return we get total unconditional love. Speaking for myself listening to my sleeping baby breathing was the best meditation I have ever done.
That is why its really hard for some Moms to go back into the workplace, and I understand that, I really do. A 9 to 5 job will give you the means to pay the bills, but adding the costs of childcare into the mix (and no one can look after your kids better than you, right?) reduces that income, and the job becomes just another obligation, a task to be got through. That is why I am not advocating getting a job. I would really love for you to concentrate on your career.
And there are three reasons to do that.
Be the best role model for your kids.
Making a career plan, and following it will really give you the motivation to get back into the workplace. Maybe your plan involves retraining, or moving through different jobs to help you gain experience in your chosen field. Whatever the plan, working towards your goal will give you job satisfaction and a feeling of fulfillment. Isn’t that a great role model to be for your kids?
Learn to know yourself.
Working towards a specific career goal is always a journey of self discovery. You will go through periods of doubt, or even periods when you feel like you want to give up. Its really easy to slip back into the role of nurturing mother. But learning for yourself how hard it can be gives you the wisdom to help your kids on their journeys of self awareness; help them deal with the pressures of school, and study choices. Having a career path will make you more self aware, and enable you to teach your kids to know themselves too.
Make time with your family quality time.
Having a job means there is more money for treats and holidays; but working towards a fulfilling career will make you feel so much more content and your kids are going to enjoy the benefits of that even more. Don’t let the memories of their childhood be that Mom was always working and always tired, Let them remember how energised you were when you spent fun time with them.
If you are a Mom wondering whether going back to work is the right decision, whether you will be somehow selling your family short if you are not there for them 100% of the time; consider whether you are planning your career or just getting a job to help the family finances. If its the latter, stop for a moment and contemplate putting yourself and your career first. Invest in yourself and you will be investing in your family.