Work Life Balance

In every working mom's life, there is a yearning to achieve the so-called work life balance. I never really thought that there would be a point wherein I have to face the dilemma all working moms face -- that is to choose work, home or a fine balance in between.

There is always the different categories of moms, according to the career they choose after they've had their kids. The 2 extremes are the working mom, and the SAHM (stay at home mother).

Before, I have always thought that I would be a working mom like my mother, getting away at the beginning of the day, leaving the children under the care of a nanny or a loving grandmother, go home at the end of the day, check on the kids, and that's it. Maybe spend more time with the kids on weekends.

Until I became a mom, I never knew how much guilt a mom could feel when she had to leave her child into the care of another person. How much a mom would justify her choice of working by saying that they all need the earning for the child's food, clothing, shelter and education. But there it is....the guilt and also the regret that they are going to miss out on a lot of their kids' developmental milestones.

Stay at home moms have less of the guilt to deal with since they are with their child almost 24/7. But stay at home moms have to deal with being financially dependent on their spouse's income, since she doesn't get paid. Also, stay at home moms, in most instances, would have to give up the many years of training she did for whatever career she fancies herself to be in. But whether or not they admit it, being with her beloved child 24/7 and witnessing everything that develops in the said child also has another downside. The feeling of being tied down to the child and the feeling that she's somehow not productive. Thus, when asked about occupation, the SAHM would self consciously say "I am JUST a housewife." (In Tagalog, "Housewife lang po" or "Wala po akong trabaho, sa bahay lang po.")Also, there is always the fear of who to turn to for "bringing home the bacon" if the man of the house suddenly cannot work, or worse, dies unexpectedly.

Now, there are moms that are neither fully working nor fully stay at home. There is the part timer, there is the work at home mom. All of these try to more or less strike a balance between work and home.

But whatever moms (and dads) decide, one thing is clear. Good mothers come in all categories. They may stay at home, they may go out and work, they may do part time work or work from home....but for every choice there is always a drawback...and an advantage. Mothers try to strike a balance because they are aware that their children need them, both at home and to earn for their needs.


Happymommi said...

i so agree with what you've written here :) ...

i am a working mom too and yes i am feeling the guilt :(