Thursday, December 27, 2012

First Post - Intro and The Mom Guilt Dilemma

It’s been one year since my daughter was born and I still feel like I need a user's manual. Not for her, for me. I went from being a single 28 year old living on my own focusing on work, art and travel, then poof, a year later I was engaged, pregnant and in escrow purchasing our 92 year old fixer-upper! The wedding is still in the planning stages due to our inexplicable rush into organized chaos! Now, here I am, a working mom with a fiancé, a mortgage, two dogs and a daughter who started walking at 9 months and hasn't slowed down since (apparently she take after her parents) and my only question is how do I handle all that comes with it.

   Mom guilt is my first dilemma. Unfortunately, I have to travel for work every other month or so. I know, that's nothing compared to a ton of other working parents, but for me it is heart wrenching. I grew up with an at-home-mom for the early years of my childhood and she remembers every little first, every adorable quirk and everything in between. This is where my guilt comes in. Working full time does not allow me to see every little thing she does, and as crazy as it sounds, it kills me. You'd understand if you were to meet this little one, she is pretty rad, I think she has a future in physical comedy! Anyway, leaving for work in the morning seeing her hands reach for me and little tears run down her uber chubby cheeks is probably the worst form of torture I have endured since I was 11 years old and realized how much I hated sharing a classroom with pre-teen, mean girls. So, my daily routine is mostly focused on getting to work on time so that I can leave on time and get right back home to her. Travel, however, is a bit more complicated, in fact it includes self trickery. Rather than go crazy every time I have to leave that ever changing ball of energy, I convince myself that I am leaving on a short mommy get-away. Sure it's work, but the up side is that I will sleep through the night without interruption, I won't have to smell one dirty diaper for the entire time I am away and the topper - wine, yes a glass as soon as I clock out and if I so desire another and maybe even another right before bed! The guilt does not just disappear however. Just when I think "I've got this!" and "It's getting better!" She does something super genius, for what I think is the first time, and everyone around me is giving me that look like "Sorry Hun, she's been doing that for a week now, we thought you knew." Cool, real cool, another ride on the guilt roller coaster. Luckily, I have an amazing fiancé who does an awesome job of pointing out logic and reason amidst my emotional outbursts which at times, include uncontrollable crying, illogical rants about how one income will do if we live like pioneers and sadly, irrelevant and emotionally driven accusations about who didn't do the dishes last. Yea, he is pretty much amazing for even trying to communicate with me when that is all going down!

  While I often feel like I am the only woman in the history of the world to ever have to work and raise a family, I am capable of realizing that millions of other moms do it everyday...with more than one child!  Yes, it is hard for me to imagine too, but people do choose to have more than one and most seem to make it ok. This is where I realize that there are ways to cope with what seems like the most difficult goal in the world... trying to be the best parent ever. Way #1: Understand that I will never be the best parent ever. Already, I feel a little less anxious! Way #2: Quality time is much more valuable than the quantity of time I spend with her. Seriously, I'll take sweet tired baby at 7:30 p.m. who wants to cuddle and fall asleep with me, over crazy monster baby at 11:00 a.m. who is tired, fighting nap time and on a rampage to tear apart everything she can get her hands on. By the way, shout out to Grammie (my mom) who takes care of the little monster while we work! Finally, Way #3: Be content and grateful. There are millions of Americans who wish their biggest problem was going to work every day. I'm one of the lucky ones, even though my paycheck could use a few more zeros on the end, I have a job and to be honest, it is more than just a job. It is how I give that sweet little monster everything she needs and more, it is how I will teach her, by example, to be a responsible adult, and it is how she will understand that you sometimes you have to sacrifice for the ones you love.

  With all of that and until I encounter the next dilemma among my self-inflicted "organized chaos" I hope that this post helps at least one working mommy who can relate to the mom guilt that I try to fight off every weekday. Sometimes it’s good to know that the good kind of crazy is often harmonious. ;)

Amanda Moss


  1. Yep, embrace the organised chaos! I have 3 (aged 8 yrs, 3 yrs and 10 months) and I've just had to accept that my house and my life is going to be disorganised! Its the only way!!

  2. You sounds like a fabulous mom!! I feel you on the Mom guilt, I have a wonderful 7 month old but every time I leave him I get a pain in my heart. I think it just comes with the territory =)