Friday, February 14, 2014

Mothering, money, and kids

It's hard to be a great mom and a great earner at the same time
I was a rock star Mommy this Halloween, when I sewed costumes
 and created fun, healthy snacks for my kids

After experiencing loss, financial instability, and a suffocating anxiety about my family's welfare over the last 5 years, I'd be the last one to admonish another for doing whatever it takes to chase the almighty dollar.

Because no matter what anyone says, it is difficult, if not irresponsible, to commit to children after school hours, to enjoy time with family, if you don't have a dollar in your back pocket.

Last weekend I was working when my daughter called me in tears. Her broken words traveled straight through the phone and pierced my heart. Instantly, I came down with a bad case of mommy guilt. I was making more money these days, but I wasn't as attentive as usual. When it came to mothering, I was forced to face the truth: I wasn't excelling.

It stung.

But I believe the balance between mothering and working ebbs and flows: sometimes we're better at one role than another. When I'm a rock star mom, I'm rarely a rock star earner. When I'm a rock star earner, well, I'm usually not the best mom. I throw myself into each role, and when I realize one needs an extra push, an extra mile, I throw my energy that way. It's something I've come to accept. I think it's okay.

After my daughter explained in between sobs that her brother had given her a dismally low score for her performance in their singing contest, I calmed both of us down. I pushed through my work, packed up and went home.

It was time to make a comeback in the mommy role.

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