It’s five in the morning.
After nursing the baby, I tip-toed him back to his crib, snuck downstairs, put on coffee and sat down to write this post. In an hour I’ll be scurrying around, washing jam off faces, finding socks that match, applying mascara and rushing out the door to the daycare and then to work.
It’s how I’ve had to find time to write lately. By stealing it. Sunday I totally lucked out when Shaune offered to take both kids to the car wash and Canadian Tire.
Being a parent who works is no easy thing.
And although I won’t Dooce myself – thanks Heather for learning that lesson and passing it on, I will say that while my work situation is pretty close to ideal, every day I still find myself scrounging for time, grappling with guilt, and grading myself a big fat C minus on the How I did today scale .
And I say working parent not mother, because I don’t see it being any easier for Shaune. Some nights his job keeps him late enough that he doesn’t even get to kiss the boys goodnight while they are awake.
So last night, while I was preparing dinner for the kids, feeling like an utter failure because I was exhausted and grouchy and in no mood to try and create some shiny moments with the boys, a thought came to me.
It was kind of revolutionary for me. Oh who am I kidding? It was downright insurgent!
What if this sense of inadequacy is normal? I wondered. What if I just accepted it and moved on? What if I gave myself a small break and instead of wallowing in this worry-hole that somehow I’d be caught red-handed for incompetence in every aspect of my life, I appreciated that I was doing the best that I could? That left-over spaghetti wouldn’t ruin Deaglan’s childhood and that it was okay to let them watch a little TV so I could have a few minutes to unwind from my day.
What if I removed the phrase work-home balance from my mental lexicon and pasted in new ones like good enough, and it is what it is?
I wondered. Could it be that easy?