I love being a fulltime working mom. It keeps me sane. Sometimes it is the only “me” time I get for weeks and luckily, I love doing what I do. Other than that, I also do it for the money.
Of course I continue to work full time because my career offers my family and me opportunities that I would not otherwise afford.
And these opportunities say just as much about my values as my unconditional love for my children does.
Then there is the other job, motherhood.
Like in any job, motherhood has its share of ups and downs.
But unlike most jobs motherhood is the one that women are supposed to cherish and give gratitude for on a daily basis. It is not unusual for those in employment to say “I hate my job!”
Mothers tend to do just the opposite.
As a mother, I love to spend time with family even when that means I am going round the house picking up after a hyperactive toddler, trying to play with him till he drops off into an exhausted sleep and failing.
Nine out of ten times he exhausts ME instead and a five minute break on the sofa for me turns into a two hour nap!
That nap, left to take its own course might easily be longer… but I am rudely woken up when he tags at my hair screaming “Mama now! Maaaaaaaaaaaa…!” Because he decides it’s time for a snack you don’t have 5 minutes to make! So I cheat!
I have found ways to cheat that a ‘super mom’ would also envy, becoming quite skilled at anticipating disaster, plan and cook ahead, and get the children to unwittingly help me out whilst having fun at the same time.
One day of every weekend has become a day for cooking up a storm! I make most of the sauce dishes which I divide into meal portions for the household and freeze to cut down on the food preparation time. I also make sure to prepare a week’s supply of homemade snacks (mandazi , biscuits, popcorn, what not).
This not only saves time but it also saves some money as some of that becomes breakfast on a hectic harried morning.
I am a modern working mom and I have shamelessly invested in a washing machine. I fully acknowledge that hand washing will never go out of fashion but I got so tired of checking all the laundry hand washed by the maid, an exercise that undoubtedly took up to much of my precious time! I’m pretty sure my life would be easier if I didn’t have kids.
The sacrifices I made would mostly be mine and mostly for my own advantage, not because of a promise I’d made to one of the kids or hopes I had for their future. Without children, I’d have one less (or in my case two) distraction from reaching my goals. Traveling would be less expensive, and it’d be easier to focus on writing if I only had myself to feed.
I passionately recommend cheating from time to time.
Are you a cheating mom?