Hey there fellow Working Mom, how was your day? I know, you just got home from work 9.5 hours, you're tired, your feet hurt, your eyes are burning and your head is pounding. Dinner is burning in the oven because you had to drop everything to feed the dogs and change the baby. And there are probably days where you think it would be so much easier if you didn't have to work and could just stay home with that little baby and cuddle and play all day long, right?
Hey Working Mom, have you ever met a stay at home mom?
I remember my maternity days (a little too fondly) and thinking how bored I was. I felt useless. I was taking care of a baby all day, but what did I really accomplish? I sat on the couch, washed dishes, changed diapers, went to appointments, did laundry....but I never felt a sense of fulfillment. My work, however, did bring me this. Sound familiar? No? Good for you. Yes? High five.
Yes, I am exhausted at the end of my days sometimes and all I really want to do is sit on a patio with an ice cold beer and talk shit about my day with someone, and even though I can't do that, I wouldn't trade it for the world. Those maternity leave days were rough.
But hey there Stay At Home Mom, how's your day been? You've been puked on 7 times, got pee on your clean floors, stared at that pile of clean laundry on your couch that will never get folded for the last 2 weeks, listened to a toddler scream for three hours straight, have been holding in that poop for the last day and a half because you can't get some alone time? How the heck do you manage???? Props to you. I'm pretty sure you work harder than all of us. Your days are longer and typically filled with tiny people physically and emotionally tugging at you all day. You wipe boogers and go without showering, sometimes even forgetting to eat until dinner, and your last few moments before you pass out at night are spent scrubbing magic marker off the dining room table. Seriously, how are you doing this??
Us working moms tend to think because we leave our children all day for an office and then come home to take care of our families that we work twice as hard. This might shock some of you, but we don't. The stay at home mom is seriously made of steel. She has to be. She never gets a moment to bend or break. She has to stay strong all day. She can't take the day off and send the kids to day care just to get a few hours to be herself or run errands....she gets no PTO. She doesn't get a non-sticky, non-smelly work place....she doesn't get adult conversation (although sometimes mundane) all day long. She doesn't sit on the couch. She doesn't get to watch her favorite soap opera. Now that's not to say us working moms have it easy, either. We're away from our kids all day. Sometimes we miss milestones because they happen at daycare. We miss those babies. We don't always want to put that laundry away at the end of the day either. But we are not better than you. We do not work harder.
Stay at home or working in the field, we're all superwoman. We're not super human, but I'd like to think that some days we can get pretty damn close, and dammit, we ALL deserve recognition for that.