In getting this site off the ground I felt that it would be great to publicly launch the day after elections. I aspired to try to write something uplifting about the elections and tie it back to something to do with work and a lofty brighter side to life.
Well all of that was trumped (pun intended) when I went to pick up my kids after work in the twilight hours of the daylight savings time change.
See for a long time my husband owned his own business and worked from home. Our kids our daughter now six and our son who just turned three, were fortunate to be with their dad a lot of the time. But since he decided to go back to a corporate job working offsite, things have had to change. For the most part, it’s easier with our son because he’s younger and doesn’t know much of a difference. But with our daughter it’s been pretty tough from the get-go. The first week of needing to go to after-school care was tough. The second week was a little better and so on.
Fast forward to last night. I pulled into the elementary school parking lot and walked down the path to where the after school center is located. It was dark, no lights and if it wasn’t for a light on in a lone Kindergarten classroom, I would have tripped in a pothole. My heart sank. In that moment I couldn’t help but feel guilty for not getting her before it got dark. I knew, G, our daughter, would be worried that we forgot her. And then I thought, “What about her brother? What will he think?”
Back in the day when my husband worked from home I had horrible mom guilt. There were days when I missed first new words and even first steps. For a while when my daughter was an infant, she didn’t even want anything to do with me. What baby doesn’t want their momma? But in that moment last night, with the sun having set by 5:30 due to daylight savings time, there was a longing to go back to missing things but missing things while knowing that my kids were with their dad.
Walking in to get her was tough. The counselor told her,”See I told you she’d be here.” At that moment the counselor informed me that G was afraid that if we didn’t come soon she would miss her bedtime. And then the knife turned a bit more. The counselor told me she had been crying for a while. Oh the heartbreak.
We went to pick up her brother from pre-school and the first thing he says to me is, “You leave me here nighttime mommy. I want to go home.”
Ouch. It was hard not to cry. How could I fix this long-term? I knew the short-term fix would come and all would be well by morning. But what is the longer term solve? Right now, there isn’t one. They just need to power through. And so do I. Lots of families do this every single day and have since their kids were infants. But sadly, that knowledge doesn’t take the sting away.
Needless to say when we got home the elections really didn’t matter much to me. Were either politician going to be able to pay my bills so I don’t need to work, or get me home earlier, or give me more time in a day? No. What matters is making sure that I’m raising awesome little humans who know that they are loved and always know they are priority number one.
As us moms know, the mom guilt is real! And the feelings come and go. At least having gone through this once I can learn something from the experience. What this has taught me is that I can be a better mom by preparing them next time. Just like in business, level setting expectations with my kids and reassuring them of what my actions will be can help them cope in situations like this one.