As a millennial, I’m as nostalgic for the yesteryears as my peers, but I can admit that there are some pretty sweet parts of parenting in 2016, like convertible car seats, Amazon Prime (for our semi-last-minute baby bath towel needs), and technology that allows us to get creative when it comes to our careers. Such flexibility wasn’t available until recently, and I’m seriously thankful that I can take advantage of it and work from home. I think it’s fair to say that I’ve picked up on some consistent things that moms who work from home do. Not that I consider myself an expert (I have, um, lots to learn when it comes to time management), but I’ve had a fair amount of time to consider (and somewhat perfect) the arrangement.
I tried being a full-time working mom with an out-of-the-home job, and I tried being a stay-at-home mom, but I’ve found that working from home is the best option for my family and I, at least for this stage in our lives and in our careers (my partner’s and mine. Not my son’s, since he’s two).
Is it incredibly difficult, at times? You freakin' bet. While it't easy to assume it's the best of both worlds (and, sometimes, it is) it's also easy to see why working-from-home can be the absolute worst, and create a unique set of problems that only combining the life of a working mom and a stay-at-home mom, can provide. Still, with that being said, there are things grown-ass moms who are working from home and killing it (in the best way possible) do, that can make the entire process at least, somewhat easier. Here's just a sample:
They Know That They Are Setting An Example
My son is too young to currently understand my work, but I'm excited for the day I can explain it to him, and help him understand just what it means to have two working parents, with careers that they enjoy. I mean, what it means aside from the laptop cords and wireless computer gadgets strewn about the house.
They Take Pride In The Fact That They're Helping Provide, Financially, For Their Family
What's that, son? You want guacamole with your quesadilla? Then you will have it, because mom has that money, dear.
They Cherish Family Time
Even though my son and I are physically near each other more than we would be if I worked full-time out of the home, that doesn't always mean that we're having quality time together. So, I definitely still appreciate the times when I'm away from work and its responsibilities, and able to fully engage with him.
They Don’t Apologize For Working Hard
Confession, I have mixed feelings about all the so-called advice being offered to women around the topic of not apologizing. However, in this case, I can make an exception. You are not only "allowed" to work, but you're more than "allowed" to enjoy it.
They Ask For, And Accept, Help
In my world, help often involves having my son in the care of other people, whether it be his dad, a grandparent, or a teacher. Also, it comes in the form of caffeine.
They Avoid Feeling Guilty
Sure, this is easier said than done. I didn't say I was capable of achieving all of these things (especially not on the same day), but I'm sure there are some moms out there who can, and to all of you I say: teach me your ways.
They Take Care Of Themselves
Sometimes, when I'm really in the zone, I'll realize that I've forgotten a shower or skipped a meal. I wish this meant I was doing something amazing, but this is mostly the result of me being inefficient at telling time.
They Take Breaks When Possible
Especially when those breaks involve snacks and flying your kids above you with your feet.
They Include Their Kid(s) When Possible
Granted, my productivity is slowed down exponentially when my son sits on my lap and bangs on the keyboard, but that doesn't mean I'm not going to let him do it. It's cute, and it gives me the warm fuzzies, which never hurt anyone.
They Appreciate The Good In The Situation
This is going to look different for everyone, but even when I'm at my most frustrated, I try to remember other points in my life when my work was less flexible, or less in line with my long-term goals. It makes it a little easier to take time away from my kiddo to keep going.
They Use Their Time Wisely
Sometimes this means working around naps and bedtimes, or taking some much-needed time away from the house to work. Or, sometimes, it means giving your kid a Popsicle so he or she can be occupied long enough for you to write a few emails. Whatever works, guys. I get it.