Parents’ Corner Balancing
How to Overcome Career Mom’s Remorse Most of today’s mothers have to go to work for various reasons, including to help increase the family income or achieve professional fulfillment. But it eats at us that while we’re at work, we’re not there to witness our children’s milestones, prepare their school baon, or comfort and soothe them when they fall sick or get hurt. The following reminders can help ease your guilt.
Know that when you’re not always there, your child will learn to be more independent and self-reliant earlier.
Learn to say no to unnecessary activities or unimportant requests so you can allot more time for special bonding moments with your little one.
Remember that there is nothing wrong with savoring the perks that working gives you—professional advancement and recognition, skills development, the company of colleagues, financial security.
Accept that some people will always make you feel bad about working outside the house, and try to avoid such negativity as much as you can.
Give in to sadness if you have to miss going up the stage to pin your child’s medal, knowing that you have to make sacrifices for certain goals.
Explore ways to improve your home-work balance by asking your spouse to help out more or requesting your employer for flexible work arrangements.
Let others share in your child’s life, too, by inviting relatives or close friends to take your child to an event in your place.
Assess your life every now and then to see if you are still happy where you are or if you need to make changes. Perhaps it’s time to consider a career shift or a business of your own? You may even decide to work part-time or quit outright to devote more time to your family. Whatever you decide, what’s important is to have a work-life balance that you believe is best not just for your loved ones, but also for you. After all, an unhappy mom can’t raise happy children, even if she’s with them 24/7.
FamilyMatters | September-November 2016
I can only look to the Lord and trust that He gives special grace to every mom everywhere in the world. Meanwhile, it’s a different world out here in the U.S. Cristina is now a working mom with a little girl of her own. Her father and I are the only close relatives who can be there for Emily. But time is catching up with us grandparents, and we don’t have enough energy to take care of a three-year-old for long periods of time. Neither do we stay in the same house with them. So little Emily has had to be enrolled in a day care, as getting a full-time nanny is expensive, and fraught with trust and safety issues. Here, I miss the loving community of Filipino relatives and friends just waiting for their turn to baby-sit for you—like the ones that helped me raise Yayie and Cristina many years ago. If a genie asked me for a wish, I would tell him I want American mothers to experience child-rearing Philippine style. But that is only wishful thinking. I don’t know how I would have coped if I had to raise my two little girls here. I can only look to the Lord and trust that He gives special grace to every mom everywhere in the world, whether she has the whole village behind her or she has only herself and her husband to rely on. I know that whatever the situation, the Holy Spirit will be there. All we as mothers can do, as one mom said, is to “trust that the God who created our kids will parent them in our absence, will grow them in courage, and teach them over time that this is what love looks like. And instead of guilt, be drenched in grace.” FM