April 8, 2011

Working mama's guilt

Working mama's guilt is nothing new. You WANT to be there for every moment in your child's life, but you can't. You like/love/need your job/career and thus your little one spends a good chunk of the day with someone else. But I am lucky. One of my best friends is also my babysitter. Her daughter and my daughter are best friends. It's great.

But the guilt is still there.

For instance, I just put my two year old daughter in play school. It's one day a week and gives her a chance to meet new kids and bring home all kinds of art projects. On her first day, I took the day off work. I wanted to be there to drop her off and pick her up. I mean, it was technically her first day of school.

Dropping her off was a breeze. Apparently, my daughter is just like I was at her age. I plopped her into the room, gave her a hug and a kiss and watched as she (of course) found the one musical instrument in the room and began to play with it.

No tears. No screaming. Just my beautiful child being her independent self.

When noon hit, I peeked through the bars watching all the kids play. Where was mine? Finally I spotted her sitting on a bench. And then...she saw me. Her face lit up and she yelled "Mama!" and ran into my arms. I was in heaven.

Fast forward one week. I took her to school and again there was no crying. But I told her unfortunately, I wouldn't be picking her up. She looked at me and said, "You have to go to work?" Yep, mama has to go to work. I was bummed. She (thankfully) did not appear to be.

So why do I feel so bad?

She didn't cry (good).

She understands that I have to/want to/need to go to work (good).

So I guess it is for purely selfish reasons.

I want to be the one to see her face light up when she's being picked up.

I want to hear about her day and check out the art project first.

But I can't.

And it sucks.

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