Balance seems to be the untouchable moon of motherhood. No matter how high you climb, stretch, reach it's always just beyond your fingertips. Could it be that balance is so unreachable because of the impossible expectations placed on women by women and men alike? To achieve balance we have to change the expectations first. Motherhood, Marriage, Success. Women are often told they can have it all if they will try a litte harder. Speaking for myself as a mom/wife that has worked full time for several years and recently transitioned into being a SAHM (stay at home mom) this is what I've discovered:
When working it is hard to be a mom but easier to be myself.
When staying at home it is hard to be myself but easier to be a mom.
From society and well meaning individuals I have found unintentional but still reciprocated guilt for leaving my baby to go to work. As well as guilt for staying at home with that same baby and not being at work. There's no pleasing people. Whether you work a traditional job or work at home here is what all mothers have in common: We Love our kids. Maybe some love by staying in the home, and some love by leaving the home. Wherever you find yourself today, I want you to know mom to mom and woman to woman I know you're loving your kids in the best way you know how. And I know you sometimes feel like a woman buried beneath the mother.
In order to "get a little" you have to "give a little". To "get" some balance for the woman who sometimes feels smothered beneath the mother you may have to "give" up some unrealistic expectations. I understand. I daydream too. About the cute well behaved kids, the healthy and excellently presented meals, the home with well designed interiors, the energy to have a healthy fitness routine, the marriage thriving in the midst of it all. But here's the truth Mamma. My son who is 2.5 is very cute, but not always well behaved. The meals I cook are sometimes healthy sometimes not. My home is beautiful, but there's plenty of cluttered corners. A healthy fitness routine? I just started stretching for 30 minutes the past two mornings. We will see. And the thriving marriage? It's a daily effort. You know what? That's what I call balance.