It is no secret that being a mom is one of the most challenging jobs. So it may come as a shock that in 2020, there were 23.5 million women with children under the age of 18 working outside of the home, according to the U.S. Census!1 If you’re a working mom like me, you know that the days can be long and challenging. Some days, you feel like a rockstar; others, you feel like you’re at rock bottom. Whether you work full-time, part-time, nights, or weekends, we all know the struggle of juggling it all! Here are a few signs you’re a working mom.
10 Signs You’re a Working Mom
1. You’ve enjoyed the time away from your kids and might feel guilty about it.
I love my children more than anything, and I’m no stranger to the guilt of dropping them off in the morning for daycare as I head to work. However, as much as I miss them and love spending time with them, I have enjoyed most of my days away! My job gives me another sense of purpose and is part of my identity. I worked hard for my career and am good at what I do. Having adult conversations during the day isn’t a bad bonus, either! It is okay to love your kids while enjoying some time away from them.
2. You’ve forgotten a spirit day, holiday, class party, doctor’s appointment, etc., for your kids or yourself.
There is nothing like scrambling early in the morning for the 100th day of school costume with an assortment of items from around your house or making a 10 p.m. trip to the store to pick up a baked good for the class party the next day. Motherhood comes with an unbelievable mental load that can take a toll. Add in the mental load of a job, and you may start to run out of space! I’ve tried every trick in the book: calendars, phone reminders, post-its, you name it! Somehow, I always end up forgetting something.
3. You’ve used your kids as an excuse to get out of something for work.
“Sorry I can’t stay late for the meeting, my kid has a dentist appointment!” Whether true or not, doing anything “extra” is nearly impossible when you’re a working mom. A little white lie won’t hurt anyone, especially if it will save a bit of your sanity!
4. You’ve ordered out for dinner more than once (or twice) in a week.
You’ve worked a full day, picked up the kids, carted them around to their respective sports, activities, and appointments, done the grocery shopping and other errands, and FINALLY arrived home late in the evening. The nighttime routine of battling through homework assignments, making lunches, laying out clothes, and giving baths and showers is on deck. There is nothing wrong with ordering pizza on a Tuesday night to relieve some of the stress of the work week! Just make sure you use paper plates to avoid doing dishes, too! 😉
5. You’ve had to use a sick day, but not for yourself.
Daycare germs are relentless. Along with the perpetually runny noses, your kids will bring home a variety of other bugs to share with everyone else in the house. When fevers spike and daycare is not an option, it’s mom to the rescue! I admit I love the snuggles I get when my kiddo is under the weather.
6. You need a third arm to carry all those bags in the morning.
Backpacks, diaper bags, lunch boxes…oh my! Most mornings, it looks like I’m heading on the vacation I desperately need. It’s not a typical day if I’m not carrying at least five bags.
7. You’ve had to leave work to bring your kids something.
Remember how I said I always end up forgetting something? When the phone number for daycare pops up on your phone, you know it can’t be good. Once, I sent my son to school with a grilled chicken salad that was meant to be my lunch. Another time, he had an accident and had no extra clean clothes. Some emergencies can’t wait until the end of the day. Thank goodness for lunch breaks and flexible bosses!
8. You’ve had a chaotic morning after sleeping through an alarm.
I don’t think there is anything worse than waking up on a workday and realizing you’ve slept through your alarm. First, the panic sets in, followed by a mad dash to get to work and school on time. And leave it to your kids to have a complete meltdown these days while you’re just trying to get their shoes on and get out the door! Preparing the night before can alleviate some of this stress, but there are bound to be days that you’ll pull up to work 20 minutes late with two different earrings on.
9. You’ve missed a school event because of work.
Try as you might; there will come a time when you realize it is impossible to make it to every school event. A Halloween parade in the middle of the day? A Thanksgiving Feast at 10 a.m.? Sometimes, our schedules just don’t align. If you’re lucky enough to have family or friends in the area, now is the time to call in reinforcements!
10. You’ve fallen asleep on the couch at 7 p.m.
. . . And you’re probably still in your work clothes. Being a working mom is EXHAUSTING. There is no shame in tucking yourself in early to get the needed rest. Just remember to set extra alarms for the next day!
Being a working mom is not for the faint of heart! You may relate to some (or all) of these signs you’re a working mom. What else would you add to the list?