Q. Recently a few friends and I were discussing the challenges of being a working mom in the summer. It can feel like we are constantly dealing with the inner struggle of wanting to spend time with my kids, yet still needing to find some time to work. As a mom, I do not want their summer memories to be filled with images of them spending too much time spent alone while I am on the phone or meetings. Sometimes I feel overwhelmed with guilt and have thoughts of stopping working altogether. Our family budget does not allow me to do this, and I feel trapped. Is it possible to still work and be a great mom?
A. For decades, mothers have been experiencing similar emotions. Yet, I wonder if we are looking in the wrong place to find the definition of “a Great Mom.” The measure of a good mother is not found in being employed, married, how you educate your child or even if you breastfeed or even eat all organic food. Rather, successful motherhood is found in a loving relationship and commitment to do what is best for our children. Everything else are just different ways we show the love. Summer can be a bigger challenge for working moms. It may require a bit more organization and finding creative ways to work and still spend time with your kids. Perhaps extend their bedtime so you are able to spend some time with them when dinner is done. Or doing some double tasking. Even as I write this, our daughter is blowing bubbles while I do some work on the desk. Many time they just want to be with us. Certainly, there are days that I feel closer to this balance than others during the summer. However, the loving gestures we show our children will last all year long.