Today as I was getting ready for work, my little one was in her walker. She followed me wherever I went. I could hear the walker hitting the door frame as she tries to get in the room but her walker can’t get through the door. I was singing “baa-baa-black sheep” while getting dressed, and all I see was her head peeping on the door and some funny sounds that she was making. I called her name and she instantly responded with long “Ahhhhhh!” in her little voice. I walked around and she just kept following me. As I put my make-up on in the bathroom, she was right behind me smiling on the mirror. Her curious little eyes and innocent smile automatically puts me on a happy mood. I don’t need a cup of coffee! I put on my boots and stood at a full length mirror to fix my hair, there she was beside me tugging on my boot saying “Mam-ma!” As usual, I carried her and danced around singing more nursery songs, she smiled with glee. Then it was time to go, I left her with her nanny.
It has been 6 months since I got back to work. I thought I’ve adjusted to the routine but for some reason, today is not like any other day. She just turned 9 months old. She understands that “bye-bye” is no longer just a word, she knows that Mommy will be away for a couple of hours. She cried but I had to kiss her and walk away feeling really guilty for leaving her behind. I drove to work consoling myself “I’m sure I’m not the only one feeling this way”. As soon as I sat in my office, I typed into Google – WORK, MOM, GUILT. And ta-dah! The first on the list is a Letter To Working Mothers: Stop Feeling So Guilty . I am not alone.
Like many other mothers, I both choose to and need to work. I do feel the guilt of not being home for her but at the end of the day, we all have to make sacrifices, adjustments and trade-offs. I think of her all day – you can’t really stop being mother wherever you are, can you? When I get back home, I hear the excitement in her voice and see a big smile on her face, and that makes everything OK. I ensure she always have a special time with Mommy when nothing else matters but her. I may never get used to the routine (especially the part when I leave her behind), but at the end of the day, I am a working Mom (this is redundant) who will always do what’s best for her.