Becoming a mom has been one of the most rewarding events in my life. If you are a mom, you will most likely agree with me that it isn’t what you expected.
I am a planner. For me, it started years before with the conversation “when is it a good time?” This brought me to “do I have kids young so they are out of the house while I still have the energy to travel the world? How old is too old?” For women, there are so many external factors to consider besides just our biological clock. “Do I stay at home, will I have to give up my career? Will this set me back in my career? I’m not where I want to be yet!”
After years of headache with regards to the topic, I came to the realization- there is never a perfect time!
Prior to having my daughter at 31, I was dead focused on my career. My biggest fear was not being able to continue at the pace my career was going, all while being an attentive wife and mom. I still struggle with this.
As soon as I announced that I was pregnant, the most common question was “are you going to keep working?” WHAT?! I run my own business in which I have poured my life into for several years, I have staff that I am responsible for and who look up to me. Of course I am going to keep working.
Yet, why is this question so common for women? No one was asking my husband if he was going to keep working. I had a lot of anger towards this.
There is so much noise around this topic. Why as women do we have to give up our careers and life to have a family? Why does this have to be a choice? We can love, be successful, and have babies. Work is not my whole life, and babies are not my whole life. I felt as if I needed to prove everyone wrong.
Moving beyond the difficult decision to start a family came the next wave of heavy emotions-“mom guilt.” Questions popped into my head like “if I continue to work, will I miss out on the little moments in my daughter’s life that a stay at home mom wouldn’t? Will the child feel resentment towards me? Will this come across as me prioritizing work over my family?”
Everyone works, parents, loves differently! One lifestyle is not superior to another-so I am day by day learning to drop the guilt. I believe in my values and how I want to raise my children. I want to lead and teach them by example. For me, that is showing my daughter work ethic and drive while encouraging her to think big and be creative.
I want to show my daughter who her mother truly is. Of course I am her mom and I will give her the world, but I also want to show her my gifts. I don’t want to tell her stories of who I used to be or what I used to do. I want to show her where I started and where it has taken me! I want my daughter to be proud of me. If you are a working mom, I know that your kids would be fulfilled to know that their mom lived their passion rather than putting life on hold to have children. So many mothers live vicariously through their children, but it’s okay to live vicariously through yourself instead.
My message to you is to drop the guilt. Challenge yourself to carry out your values, not societal norms. How you choose to work, parent and love is you and your family’s decision only. Leave a mark. Show your kids your talents. Leave your legacy- YOURS, not your kids’, not your husband’s, but yours.