I have been a stay at home mom, a work from home mom, and a working out of the house mom. I would never presume to say which one of those jobs is the hardest in general. They are all hard in their own ways. But I can say, definitively, that being a work from home mom was the hardest for me.
Having it All
When I became a new mom, I remember being indoctrinated into this idea that I could “have it all” by running a small business from home while still being with my family. Thanks to #momboss #MLM culture, practically every mommy blogger I followed on social media told me that true motherhood bliss was working from the pool while my kids played peacefully nearby. It sounded nice, but let’s be real. No work from home mom has ever experienced that. At least not for any meaningful amount of time.
I was never much into MLMs, with good reason. But I guess that didn’t stop the “have it all” mentality from slipping into my consciousness. Does having it all really mean working from home?
What if having it all means going to work every day and getting a nanny for my kids? What if trying to do my job like I don’t have kids, and taking care of my kids like I don’t have a job, sounds like way too much?
Failing at Both
For me, trying to work while taking care of two very young children was definitely too much. I was constantly making mistakes at my job. Letting myself and other people down, forgetting deadlines, failing to return emails and pay invoices. I was also making mistakes with my kids. It felt like the more I tried to be a better career woman and a better mom, the worse I got at both.
My kids are 5 and 7 now. It’s easier to work from home, especially since there is a large chunk of the day when they are both at school. But I am here to tell you that I would absolutely, emphatically, never go back to working from home if the kids were smaller.
The thing is, “having it all” can be whatever works best for you. Having it all might mean getting to stay at home every day with your precious babies, without the mundane burdens of work to get in the way. Or, having it all might mean going to work 8 hours a day and getting to feel a little like the human you were before becoming a mom.
Having it all is what you make of it. Never let a #bossbabe tell you otherwise.