Working moms worry about many things: How are they going to fit everything into 24 hours a day? How will they stay sane? And, most importantly, how will their decision to work affect their children?
The truth is that working moms are awesome and no one knows this as well as I do. My mom was the main breadwinner of my family, and always has been. And even though I became a SAHM, I can't even begin to tell you how much I've learned from my mom. Starting with these things...
1. Do what you love.
My brother and I are always joking about how our parents spoiled us, work-wise. Both my father and my mom love their jobs, and since this is all that we know, we won't settle for anything less. I believe that everyone should have something that they love doing. This can be a job, a hobby, a passion, a dream -- anything, really. And it doesn't have to be big, either. Because if we have at least one thing we love doing, our lives will be a little bit brighter.
2. Work hard.
My mom was not only brilliant at her job, she also worked extremely hard at it, and made sure that everything she did was done well. And she was right, because hard work pays off for everyone. Maybe we want to be good at what we're doing, or we work hard to support our family. But whatever it is we want to do, we should put lots of thought and effort into it.
3. Take care of your needs.
My mom needed a lot of alone time, and since I've had children, I do, too. It's one of the reasons I send my children to day care even though I don't work. I don't function very well without downtime, and I can fully understand every mother who feels the same way. After all, every parent needs some time to switch off, regroup and actually finish that cup of coffee. Our needs are just as important as the needs of our children; they're just easier to ignore.
4. Never judge other mothers.
My mother has always been the type who did her own thing and never cared what others thought of her. She just wanted to do her job, and to do it well. But she never judged other mothers, whether they decided to stay at home or work. Her point is that everyone just does their best according to their circumstances, personal traits and possibilities -- and judgment never makes sense. I believe it's a good philosophy to live by.
5. Be a role model for your children.
A friend once told me one of the reasons she works is because she has daughters. It's very important to show girls -- and boys -- that mothers can work, even if the whole world may tell them that they shouldn't. I am a SAHM, but I sometimes talk about gender roles with my children. Thanks to my mom, I can tell them: "Of course women can work; after all, your grandmother does, too!" My mother has always stressed the importance that being independent has for women, and I fully agree.
Having a working mother is a gift. Without her, I wouldn't even know what is possible. I wouldn't work so hard to pursue my dreams. And of course I want to provide the same inspiration and be a role model to my children as well.
If you are a working mother, please remember that not only will your children take no harm from you having a job -- they will very likely also be grateful to have such a hardworking, inspiring mother.
This post was previously published on Scary Mommy.