I find the morning balancing act as a working mother very difficult. Yes, this is probably quite obvious. There are so many ways in which being a working mom is difficult. I think the morning pressure tops the list.
A while ago, I was running around, as usual, trying to get my kids off to school. Amichai, who is five, can easily walk down the flight of stairs by himself and enter his classroom. On that particular day (and on most days), he refused to go alone. Almost in tears, since I was late to work, I begged him to simply GO! Another mother (note - one who doesn't work) said to me, "You know Romi, they are only young once. I think you should just go with him."
I was resentful of her comment at first, and she actually called me later in the day to apologize, but her words have rung true for me ever since. And on many occassions,I have used her words to guide me through the morning routine. I already see that my older boys are pushing back. They don't want to be hugged all the time; they don't need to be walked to the bus stop; they don't always come home right after school if they are busy with their friends. Our kids stay little and needy for such a brief amount of time.
And so, each morning, as I nervously look at my watch and think about how late I am for work, I try (TRY) to appreciate the morning routine and the walk to class. It's not always easy. There are times (like today) when Eliav decides he MUST open the door to the daycare by himself and he has a twenty minute tantrum until it is done properly. On those days, I'm ready to scream, "I have to get to work Eliav! Don't you care that I'm trying to feed you and put money in the bank?!" But no, he doesn't care. He just wants things the way that he wants them, and he wants his mommy to spend those few extra seconds with him in the morning.
I haven't gotten this routine down perfectly. Some mornings, the kids melt my heart as they hug and kiss me and skip off to school. Other mornings, I get to work late and in a very bad mood. What I try to remember, overall, is that those extra 10 minutes at work are nowhere near as important as those extra 10 minutes bringing Amichai into class or kissing Eliav one last time before school. And that is where I try to place my focus each morning.
Someday, I'll look back on these days and I won't remember how many blog posts I was able to get through at work; I won't remember whether I showed up at 8:15 or 8:35 each day.
I will, however, remember Zeli's giggle as I deposit him with his friends, Amichai's routine of singing "We're off to see the Wizard" as we skip together to class, and Eliav's dramatic air kiss when I walk out the door of his classroom.
Lessons continually being learned by a working mother.