If you’re anything like me, being a mom is your greatest joy. It fulfills desires that you never knew you had. Your once empty spaces are full to the brim and all is well in your soul now that you have this precious little life with you always. Mommin’ is basically your calling in life, but you still have more to offer, to learn, to achieve. You want a career that’s meaningful, that will encourage you to grow, and that will allow your family opportunities and adventures that would not be possible without the extra income.
If you don’t follow the rules, like me, you probably didn’t stick to “the schedule” i.e. high school, college, career, marriage, babies, happily ever after. Your story might look something like this- high school, undecided, college, undecided, career, nevermind don’t like that, college, undecided, marriage, career, nope that’s boring, college, baby, etc…. Finally something will stick, and you find yourself as a student yet again. Except for this time you aren’t 18 with a part time job at a burger joint whose only concern is if you favor the girl on your fake ID enough to get into the pub. This time you’re married, with a baby, or maybe 2 or 3, and a home to manage. You have responsibilities and to-do’s for days. Bellies to fill, heinies to wipe. From patty cake to dishes to diapers and laundry, your time is spent, but you add college to your plate because why not? It’s full, but you came to eat.
You’re well in to the semester and one day, when the baby is finally taking a nap, you think to yourself should I do the dishes that have spread from the sink to the counter and next stop is the floor (that could probably use a mopping)? Should I study for my exam? Should I do that assignment that’s due tomorrow? Fold the clothes that have been in the dryer for 3 days (or let them tumble to “get the wrinkles out” for the 89th time)? Or should I sit on the couch and mindlessly scroll through Pinterest for an hour because my brain has officially shut down and been taken over by the lyrics to the baby shark song…
Doo doo doo doo doo. Shit.
I say all this to say, you are not alone in your struggle, Mama.
I know it’s hard.
It’s hard doing work on your laptop while curious hands try to push all the keys.
It’s hard to study your books while teething, drooly mouths chew on your pages.
It’s hard to sneak out for class, praying they won’t wake up because those little arms stretched out towards you make it harder to go.
It’s hard to focus during a lecture when you’re wondering if they’re okay, how they’re feeling. I wonder if her belly stopped hurting… I forgot to take more milk out to thaw I hope she has enough for the day…. She was really cranky this morning I hope she is felling better and having a great day…. I forgot to tell the sitter that her favorite blanket is in the dryer, she’ll be looking for it…. Before you know it you’ve missed a solid 5 minutes of physics and you pray it wasn’t too terribly important.
And some days the baby is screaming, or the kids are fighting, and you’re just trying to submit an assignment on time and you think to yourself “this isn’t worth it” but it is.
Because you made it through birthing a child (a walk in the park…Jurassic park), and you’re conquering motherhood (the scariest hood of them all) , and you’re going to kick ass in this, too.
So read bedtime stories and then your school books.
Watch Puppy Dog Pals and then watch your online lectures.
Do crafts and then do assignments.
Load up diaper bags and book bags.
Teach them while you learn.
Wish them sweet dreams while you chase yours.
And some days, do nothing. Put those kids to sleep and get a cold beer because, in the words of Kris J, “you’re doing amazing, sweetie.”