As a working mother and college student my plate is quite full. I have grown accustomed to rising early and retiring late, pushing myself to the max because I like the idea of getting things done. A typical day for me starts at 6 a.m. getting the kids and myself dressed and leaving for work. I spend eight hours in the office and finish up by 4:30 p.m. Interestingly, the most hectic and challenging part of my entire day is not the job itself, but actually arriving home by 5:45 to make the most of very limited time.
I cook, clean, make sure the children get baths and go to bed, then I study for class. By 10 p.m. I finally unwind. Then I start the process all over the next morning. This routine probably sounds all too familiar. Being a mom is the most rewarding job in the world; however, it can be difficult sometimes to pull everything together when we have work and other responsibilities. So how does the busy mom stay balanced?
A few mothers shared their experiences and provided valuable insight into a hectic, yet balanced working motherhood. For example, Robin works for an attorney's office. Her day begins at 7 a.m. and ends around 11:30 p.m. During that time, she is working in the office, getting home to cook dinner, walking the dog, performing chores, assisting her daughter and giving attention to other activities. Despite Robin's extremely long day, she suggests taking a "mental break" for relaxation. Prayer, meditation and yoga are practical means of centering oneself and resting the mind.
According to Alexis, weekly Bible study affords her the opportunity of settling her thoughts and remaining focused. Evelyn uses her Pilates machine for a nice workout during the evenings. One thing I do each day is set aside 30 minutes of undisturbed time. I calmly reflect on my day or enjoy a power nap.
In the book "Just Let Me Lie Down" by Kristin Van Ogtrop, the author states that there are home situations in which we don't need to aim higher than good enough. This is true in many respects. Dinner doesn't have to be a restaurant-style spread. Salad and pasta, or even sandwiches will do sometimes. The home should be presentable, yet it doesn't have to look like a museum. As long as things are in order and you can find stuff, that's what matters. The point of it all is to not set the bar so high that we become overwhelmed. This causes us to deny ourselves the right to a balanced, fulfilling life. We are mothers, but we are also women who should take care of our personal needs. Evelyn made a valid point of not trying to do it all by ourselves. I have been guilty of not delegating enough to my husband and children. This is unhealthy and doesn't create a unified household. A bit of teamwork is productive and teaches family members a sense of responsibility.
Overall, we are proud of our most rewarding role. Being a working mother has taught me unconditional love for my children and that most of the hard work I do is for them. Robin added that she has learned patience from being a mother and not to worry over everything. Great advice.