It’s been a hot minute since we’ve dropped in here. I guess it is a lot harder to balance this whole “working mom” thing than I thought.
I went back to work in January. Holland has been staying during the day with her great-grandparents. Adam’s grandparents picked up their lives and moved to Little Rock for three months to keep her so that she would not have to go to daycare until April. Well, April is quickly approaching and our sweet Holland is already five months old and I’m over here still struggling to adapt to life as a full-time working mom.
Here’s what a typical day in my life looks life now:
6:00 am – Wake up
6:15-6:30 am – Feed Holland
6:45 am– Dress Holland and pack her stuff
7:00 am– Great-grandparents pick up Holland
7:00-8:00 am– Eat breakfast; get ready for work
8:00-8:30 am– Commute to work
8:30-4:30 pm – Work
4:30-5:30 pm– Drive to pick up Holland
5:30-5:45 pm – Drive home with Holland
5:45-6:45 pm – Eat dinner/play with Holland
6:45-7:00 pm – Holland’s bedtime
7:00-7:30 pm– Feed Holland/Rock her to sleep
7:30-9:30 pm– Fold cloth diapers/drink wine/spend time with Adam/shower/relax (HA!)
9:30-12:30 am – Sleep
12:30-1:00 am – Feed Holland
1:00-6:00 am – Sleep
Repeat 5x until the weekend.
On a generous day, I have 3.5 hours with my daughter and that includes time spent in the car with her and time feeding her in the middle of the night. THREE AND A HALF HOURS! Excuse my French. but….are you fucking kidding me!?
It’s so frustrating being a working mom in America. I am the breadwinner of my household and so my job is very, very necessary to pay our basic bills. Yet, I am also necessary for other reasons these days — after all, I am Holland’s only food source at the moment. (Don’t even get me started on having to hook up to my pump three times a day while I work!) And believe it or not, I really like spending time with that human being I helped create.
So, I spend Monday-Friday in a constant fog of inadequacy. I feel inadequate at work because I’m constantly thinking about Holland and wishing I was with her. I feel inadequate with Holland because I feel like I’m a part-time mom. I feel inadequate as a wife because by the time the baby is in bed, my brain is spent and I want to just rest and relax instead of fostering a relationship with my husband. I feel inadequate as a daughter/daughter-in-law because there are never enough hours in the day to call with Holland updates or send enough pictures. I feel inadequate as a friend because who actually has time to go out with friends and catch up? Not me!
Basically, I don’t have answers. I have guilt. Major guilt. Mom guilt. Wife guilt. Friend guilt. Professional guilt. Guilt might as well be my middle name at this point.
Most days, I’m treading water… praying for the weekend so I can catch my breath and not feel like a complete failure at life. I’m told this gig gets easier. I pray it does. I love my daughter and my husband so very much. But I don’t love the guilt and the full-time working schedule. Those… I could do without.