Part-time Mommy

I’m fast approaching my third month back at work.  The first two weeks were a breeze, and the latter weeks were a series of transition and struggle, learning and coping. I’m doing better as time goes by, but it doesn’t feel the same. I think the positive aspect of it is that I’m adapting to my role at work, and I’m just going with the flow.

The other part of this, is my role is a mother. I went from being full time mom for five months to something else. A dual role that I didn’t know how to  comprehend.  How do people make it work?

Three months in, I still don’t exactly have the answer.  Family takes care of my son while I’m gone. I know I’m extremely lucky. Yet, I feel like I’m left out.  My son grows everyday. He has new habits, new skills. Most of the time, I feel like I miss the first occurrences. The family sees it before I do, and I get a text in the middle of a meeting showing me what’s new. I’m happy. I’m sad. I feel like I’m light years away.

I rush home everyday asking what my son did that day. I want to know every minute detail.  My family replies with, “Nothing exciting”. Maybe to them, the day isn’t. It’s everything to me. I want to know it all. Even if it means I missed something the first time, then I can make a mental note to see if it happens again later. After all, it is disheartening when I point out something that I believe to be new, only to hear, “Oh, we’ve seen him do that before”.

My hours at work are long. I leave when he’s just waking up. I come home, and sometimes he’s asleep. Other times, he is awake, but only for a few hours.  I get home, and sometimes I’m so tired. Other times, I have to do a few things before I see him. Either way, the time we have together is little. It never feels enough.

How do people deal with being a part-time Mommy? I know it’s a silly notion, but that’s what it feels like.  I’m only here half the time.  I know it doesn’t make me less of a mother, and it doesn’t mean that I love my son any less. It doesn’t mean that he loves me any less either.  Yet, I can’t get rid of the feeling.

That’s why this mini vacation was so important. I was able to steal away some time to feel like the “old times again”. Brief moments in time, but nonetheless so important!

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49 thoughts on “Part-time Mommy

  1. I am also a working mother. But I would not tag myself as a part-time mommy specifically because I make sure that whatever time I am with her, I am completely with her until she dozes off. She has been going to daycare since she was 4 months old and with my play-time routine, I always see things before people at daycare observe them. She loves to come back to me in the evening. Stop feeling guilty about it and you will enjoy motherhood along with your work. Its all in the brain.

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  2. First off I will say I am not a mom. I hear this a lot from working moms and I feel that when I am in that stage in life I might be the opposite. I love to work it makes me very happy and free. I couldn’t imagine feeling left out of my child’s new accomplishments must be very tough. But don’t be hard on yourself, have your family members take video moments or pictures of them during the day so you still get to enjoy it. I am sure you’re a fabulous mom💋

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    • Thank you! I was definitely a workaholic prior to motherhood. I still like to work, but it all seems less important now! I savor all the moments with my family ❤️

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  3. This is something my husband and I decided we would not have to deal with. I would be with the kids 24/7. In actuality, I don’t have anyone to watch them. I have parents, but my dad works and my mom is in the beginning stages of alztheimers. The most they can watch them as a pair is 2 hours. My sister-in-law went back to work after about 3 months of maternity leave and I remember her saying it was so hard for her. I can only imagine that it is.

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    • Kudos to you mama! Being SAHM is also difficult, so it’s not something I take lightly either. I’m sure your family really appreciates what you do.

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  4. I can somewhat feel what you’re going through. I have an odd work schedule and also separated from my baby mama so the days that I see my daughter is usually from afternoon to dinner then I drop her back off. wish I could be with her all the time. anyways, nice write up!

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    • Thank you for giving a dad’s perspective! I know it can be just as hard for a father so I really appreciate your comment. I know it’s tough, but it sounds like you’re a great father who cares.

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  5. I understand how you feel. I went back to work part-time when my son was only 6 months old and it was so hard to leave him! I don’t thnk I was functioning properly, but actually having some time for myself, not as a mummy, helped me regain a part of the pre-pregnancy me. We treasure our time together more and in time, it would all be worth it and your little one will understand you too.

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  6. This post resonates so much with me (and I’ve written a few posts around the same topic myself).

    I am also 3 months back at work after maternity leave and have come to realise that I hold 2 full time jobs. Just because you are at work, does not stop you being a mummy. If you are anything like me, you are thinking about meals, clothes, activities and anything else child related while you’re at work. You are definitely not Part-Time.

    I don’t think that any mother can whole heartedly tell you that they have their ducks all lined up in a row. I think we all just fumble through and prioritise as we go along. Because I’m at work most of the week, I’ve decided to cancel my gym membership – because for me, that’s time away from my son. In its place, I’ve decided to do home workouts with him by my side. This may change in the future – but for now time at home with him takes priority (even if it is just an hour)

    And also, kids are the funniest things, they do things behind our backs. So don’t feel like if you haven’t seen something first that you have somehow missed out. Treasure every moment like it’s the first time.
    You are doing am amazing job, its normal to question yourself every now and then because it shows that you care.

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    • I so appreciate this. You make me feel like I’m not alone and that this struggle is so common. You’re right. I’m not any less of a mom because I do so much. Bonus though…right when I came home from work the other day, he did something new! My heart melted. Thank you so much for your uplifting comment !

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  7. This is something that scares me!!! I know I will have to work when we decide to have kids but I just don’t know how I will balance it all. I know lots of moms do, I just don’t know if I can handle it. You go girl!!! I admire you!!

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  8. I’m not a mommy yet, but I did grow up with a mother who was a super career woman. I was never awake when she left for work, and when she came home I only had a couple hours with her and my Dad before having to go to bed (most of those hours were just me doing homework while she unwound from work). I have to say that I admired her work woman ambitions which is why I turned out so ambitious and determined career wise. and we were always together on the weekends which made up for never really seeing her during the week. As long as you make some type of balance with your days off (from a child’s perspective here hehe) you being a working woman will be beneficial in the long run.

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  9. Life is a struggle, but I am glad that you care enough about your son to at least carve out some time with him. I’m sorry it’s a struggle between making ends meet and having quality time with your son. And I am glad that you were able to take a mini-vacation to invest some time with your son and bond with him. He is very lucky to have you as a mother! 🙂

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    • Thank you! If anything I’m glad I’m in a position to give him what he needs. We are able to also provide great experiences for him so I consider that a win!

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  10. I only work part time and that’s hard enough. I hate being away from my little one. I have so much respect for moms who can have a full time job. I still think you are full time Momma’s in my opinion!

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  11. I completely understand where you are coming from. I went back to work 2 weeks after my first was born. It was the hardest thing I’ve ever done! I missed so much because I had to work 50+ hours a week. Now I’m on baby number 3 and I’ve been lucky enough to be home with her for her first 5 months of life.

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  12. Such a universal struggle for us Mama’s. As time passes you will feel more sure on your decisions(and if you are not you’ll adjust). So much adjusting with parenting ….

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  13. Wow! I could only imagine how you must feel! It’s great that you have family taking care of your son, therefore, you don’t have to worry about that part. However, I do understand the struggle of being at home full-time to going back to work. I dealt with it briefly and felt so guilty and left out as well. But I chose to work remotely after that and I am grateful that I can see my son daily, although it is harder to get work done with me being home and my son wanting attention. Motherhood isn’t an easy journey, but it’s one that can be done in many ways. The fact that you are working is another way to show that your provision for your son is a part of your love. While it does take time away, I believe that the best thing is to ensure that you spend some time with hm after work as much as possible. His love for you won’t change because you’re away for a few hours. You’ll be OK, Mama! It just takes some adjusting, time, and comfort with your new schedule and way of being a Mama! 🙂

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  14. Yes, I’d like to hear how other mommies deal with this as well! And what about scheduling gym time or grocery shopping after work? That leaves even less time to be with our babies. It’s so tough to figure out how to balance work, self care, family & friends time, chores, and quality baby time.

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