There’s a saying “Good moms have sticky floors, messy kitchens, laundry piles, dirty ovens, and happy kids”. God knows I score an A+ and by that phrase alone I am THE perfect mother. But how do you leave those happy kids and get back to work?!
I have 3 kids (recent one is brand new - in fact I’m writing this post while being on maternity leave), which I absolutely adore and admire with every breath they take, a husband that I’m (still, after so many years together) crazy about and, lucky me, I love my job and co-workers.
I must be the fortunate one to hit the jackpot as a most people I know are not even satisfied with one thing, let alone three!
I should know. I was “most people”. A nine to five office monkey, working tons of overtime and weekends, trying to get to the top. I was carefree at that time (for the singles in the crowd: this means no children) and my main concerns were questions such as what’s the best party to attend to on Thursday night? Which movie to go to on Friday night? What to eat, where? You get my point.
So I met my husband; then came the kids; and then there was Gizra.
Gizra is known for our up-front, straightforward attitude, and as such I want to be very honest - on the verge of blunt - and share with you some thoughts. I am a working mother. A wife. A person. Not by that specific order but that sounds just about right to me as I feel like the “person” part kicks in only after the kids are in beds.
I’ve been asking myself some questions lately:
- I want to be at the office while I am on my maternity leave. Does that make me a bad mother?
- I miss my kids and my husband and I want to be with them instead of being at the office, while I am at work. Does that make me a bad employee?
- Sometimes I cannot stand the sound of my own name when one of my employees calls me, wants something from me. Does that make me a bad manager?
- I find myself often screening my friends calls and avoiding meeting them (sometimes it involves telling a little white lie) because I just wanna stay home. Does that make me a bad friend?
- Sometimes all I want is just be left alone for a while. No kids shouting M-O-M-M-Y, No employees telling me they need something from me. Does that make me a bad person?
Is there a way to keep everyone happy? Your kids, your bosses, your employees, your friends, your husband, and last but not least - even yourself? I just know I love my job; love my husband; love my kids (definitely not in that specific order).
Truth be told, I don’t have all the answers, far from it, but I’d like to share some tips on how you can make family and work combine (just a little bit) better together:
Working nine to five?- Not necessarily! Try to be flexible in terms of working hours. You are killing two birds with one stone: arriving early means you get to leave early - just in time to get your kids out of daycare.
Safety net- There’s nothing like family support, if you’re fortunate enough to have one who is able to help you. Play nice with your mother in law, your brother, your distant cousin etc.
Don't be a stranger- There’s a saying “Better a nearby neighbor than a far away brother”. Get to know your neighbors just a little bit better, you might find it useful one day.
Don't be sociopaths- Everybody knows that the worst thing in the world is to be in a kindergarten’s WhatsApp group! I’d be the first to admit it - once I’ve been added to one, I curse like hell and immediately silence it for a year! Who wants to get messages announcing the appearance of lice or which kid lost his coat or a toy. However, it may save your ass if you’re stuck in traffic or in an important meeting and you might need another mom or dad to take your kids out of the kindergarten/school.
- Playdates - Try to convince your kids to go to a playdate, preferably at another mom’s house! That way you have some peace and quiet to finish some tasks you were suppose to finish long time ago or to finish an important presentation.