Before I had Anthony I assumed (as I'm sure many expectant mother's do) that coming back to work would be easy. My life would not significantly change. I'd play with baby, go to work, and come back home to play. The hour or so of wake up time in the morning would be enough, and the two to three hours in the evening, plus weekends would be sufficient baby time. I would be able to separate myself as a mother and employee no problem. It was a no brainer to me, and I'm sure for a lot of women this is the case.
I am not one of those women.
Even with Anthony in the lovely nursery that Jauregui & Culver, Inc. built for us working mom's, even cutting back to part time so I could have a few days at home, it is still incredibly hard being a working mother. I realize I am luckier than most. This is a family company, and as such they value my need to spend time with and grow my own family. I'm able to breastfeed without having to carry a pump to work. They have provided babysitters at no additional cost to me and a wonderful space for Anthony and others to play in. I could not be in a better situation. But it's not like it was before. I live for the days when I get to stay at home snuggling with my baby, for the times I get to pop back and feed him. I never imagined it would be like this.
It seems so different for men. They seem to be able to work just fine, and come home and spend a few hours with their babies and be satisfied. Maybe they're just better at containing their emotions (surprise, surprise) and it is terribly difficult for them to be away. Only a man can tell you that.
Some days I feel all powerful and successful for juggling being a mother, a wife, and an employee. Most days, however, I feel like a failure. If you were to see the state of my house right now you'd understand. Or to see Anthony crawl into his car seat at 3:30 ready to go home, desperate for mom time. Or to see the stack of paperwork on my desk. Sometimes I feel like I'm going against God's design, that I should be home nurturing my child. But this is my life at the moment, and I do what I have to do to keep my family functioning and successful regardless of the sacrifices that state requires. It may break my heart to hear Anthony cry in distress as I leave him, but seeing him light up when I come to get him melts my heart like no other. Knowing that I am able to help provide for my family, to do what I need to do makes everything worthwhile.