rkGrowing up, I took having a working mother for granted. Sure, I would be frustrated that she was not involved with the other PTA moms and would just show up for an event, and leave after my performance. At times I resented that she had to travel for work or left me waiting in the car when she was only supposed to dash into her clothing store for a moment. I’d kind of shake my head when people would comment on how incredible and talented my mom was. She was my mom and my default more fallible than most.
I’d echo her sentiment as I got older about how all of those non working moms were lost as their kids grew up and depended on them less. How empty their lives must be, happiness contingent on their children.
My mom never knew when I had homework or tests, but I did well and she did not need to become involved in that. Perhaps she knew my teachers’ names but missed many of the details of my day.
Now as a mom of a little girl, I want my daughter to know that she can be a mom and have a career. I’m extremely lucky that I do not have a traditional job – something I’ve felt guilty about in the past. I know she resents that I cannot come to all of the school field trips, of course even if I wanted to, the other moms would want a chance as well. I may not do all of the pick ups and drop offs as she might like, but I have an identity outside of my children. I am more than a mom and a wife. I am a business woman.
I recently sold a real estate investment that had run mostly, save for a few days a month, on auto pilot. When I first purchased the property my dad had told me to downplay it lest people get jealous and give me the evil eye. Over the years my husband has encouraged me to share my accomplishments and investments as they are noteworthy.
This year I had signed up to make my son’s class yearbook and through some miscommunication another mom became involved. The last time we spoke about the yearbook she was letting it stress her out. “I cancelled all of my appointments today,” she lamented. And I felt guilty for a moment until I realized it was an appointment with her designer. I was meeting with attorneys and real estate brokers, tenants and handymen. I may not have a full time job the way some parents do at hedge funds but I have commitments that help me strike the closest thing I can to a work/ home balance. And I’ll take it.