Waking up Grumpy: Feeling Guilty? Don’t.

Today’s guest blogger is my dear friend, Kristi M! She is a mom, writer and fellow ASU grad. Without further ado — enjoy! 

As I prepare to apply for a part-time position in a field I believe benefits people and the environment, I am reminded of my ongoing struggle with self-worth as a mother. Once a successful career woman working 50 hours a week and traveling between two cities to do it, now the mother of two little ones, the transition caused a lengthy bout of lifestyle shock.

When my first child was born, I still called in to work and answered emails just to help them out with the transition. But after a couple of months, the phone hardly rang, the emails went down from 30 a day to just a trickle. I realize now that I mourned the loss of my job, the feeling of being needed in the workplace. Don’t get me wrong, I was certainly needed by a newborn, but they were very different kind of needs. I liked being the one with all the answers, not just “the one with the lactating boobs”.

It took me quite a while to get into a routine at home, but despite this and missing my job, I knew that this was what we wanted for our kids. After the first few months of motherhood, I struggled with my self-worth when strangers would ask, “And what do you do?” Then my second child came along and ‘whew’, I could “pass” for another year. I think the enormous pressure on women from both sides creates a never-ending cycle of guilt: “If I work, does that make me a bad mom?” and “If I stay home,is the perception that I’m lazy?”

Getting over this took me a while, and is still a struggle in small doses sometimes. But by investing my time with my children, to love them and educate them while they are young, as well as volunteering in my church, my garden and causes I believe in, I no longer felt ashamed of my choice. Whatever your decision, know that women struggle on both sides of the fence, that there is green grass in patches on both sides. Make the choice that is right for your family and don’t sweat the rest.

Head over to http://southernasbiscuits.blogspot.com/ for more of Kristi’s wit and wisdom. And leave her some encouragement here b/c I want her to come back and be a guest blogger for me again!

 

Advertisements

16 thoughts on “Waking up Grumpy: Feeling Guilty? Don’t.

  1. Kristi M.,
    What a powerful statement: “I think the enormous pressure on women from both sides creates a never-ending cycle of guilt.” Too bad this is the case. I’m glad you stood your ground and did what was best for your family and you. Transitions are hard–no matter which side you’re on. Thanks for sharing.
    Linda A.

    Like

  2. Dear Kristi,
    Remember if God is happy with you, it doesn’t matter what other people think. God will furnish your needs from sources known and sources unknown. Accept yourself in this moment as being the best you could possibly be. You are giving your children a gift of security. If you work out of the home, then you are teaching them how to get along with others and know that you’ll be back. You gift of love and caring, no matter whether you stay at home or whether you work will be passed on for generation upon generation. Rejoice and be glad and be proud of who you are and what you do. Thanks Donna for having Kristi as a guest. Kristi, thanks for being a guest on Donna’s blog. Good luck to you!

    Like

  3. Kristi – We REALLY think alike so much of the time that it’s uncanny. It’s definitely not on the same scale as being out a long time for motherhood, but I know what you are saying. For me, I get the same feeling when I’m on vacation or, worse, out sick. I LIKE that I’m “the one with the answers” at work and I fear that, if I’m not there, someone else will soon step into that role. I think in both cases, the pressure is somewhat self-imposed. I know that I haven’t received any real rewards at work over the guys that clock in, do 8, and go home; but it just isn’t me to be that guy! And, the only folks that shouldn’t understand your position would be guys and women without kids. I mean, I’ve stayed home with my kids only a few times by myself and my day job is WAYYYYYY easier. So, anyone that thinks you are a slacker for not working, simply doesn’t have a clue! And, when it comes down to it, we all work our entire lives for either accolades now, or to be remembered when we are gone. I can’t think of anything that work could do for me that would top my 3 kids from having fond and positive memories of me when I’m gone. And you can even one up me on that front. You have the opportunity to be the DIRECT reason that your kids turn out to be great. Let’s face it, two roads diverged in your path and you definitly took the one less traveled. I commend you for making the sacrifice and choosing wisely!

    Like

  4. Hi Kristi,

    As an ex-nanny with a ece degree, I can understand the importance of being home and raising your children. I know that many look down on it and that there is even the feeling of laziness like you described. I believe that we all feel that as women. I know even when I do a thousand things in a day, if I ever sit to relax I feel utterly ashamed that I am.
    During one of my classes (last semester at ASU), about women and crime, I learned a lot about how the world really sees women that work and those that don’t through the eyes of others in the class and in the textbook.
    I wish we all could understand and respect any job that a woman does and support and be positive regardless of if it involves cleaning spit up or cleaning up after the boss.

    Like

  5. Hi Linda, Joan, Jean, Sean & Karin,

    Thank you so much for your understanding and encouragement! Moms (and dads) need all the support we can get.

    Donna, it was truly an honor to be a guest blogger for your awesome website. Thanks for sharing your insightful readers with me. I hope to gain a fraction of such a wonderful following.

    Peace & Love,
    Kristi
    http://southernasbiscuits.blogspot.com

    Like

    1. I love the write up. You are a fantastique, friend. Thank you for the shout out…and thank you for being such a wonderful guest blogger. I’ll be asking again in the future – so be prepared. 🙂

      Like

Share your thoughts/comments/suggestions...

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s