School, work, COVID, oh my

Amanda Loveday • September 10, 2020

I continue to read stories about the demise of the working mother. Every night I scan my Facebook and Twitter feeds before going to sleep, a routine you’d think I’d stop since the news is more anxiety ridden then comforting, and since COVID started I’m constantly reminded about the hardships of working mothers during this unprecedented times.

And don’t get me wrong, it’s hard. Really hard. My emotional rollercoasters are reminiscent of my post-partum days rather than the typical summer months. And it’s not just me. My kids have been struggling too. They clearly miss their friends. They ask why they can’t go to school and they loudly lecture strangers in public who don’t wear masks. The last one, actually makes me proud.

But as we embark on our first days of virtual learning for the 2020/2021 school year, I’m reminded of the positives that have come out of the last six months:

  • I’ve spent more time with my kids than I normally do.
  • I’ve stopped traveling so I’m home for dinner and bedtime every night.
  • I’m not rushing out the door each morning.
  • We talk more.
  • I hear about the imaginary storylines going on in their heads and they peak into my work life by dropping into Zoom calls every now and then.

Again, this isn’t easy. And I’m extremely lucky to have a job that allows me to work remotely, when needed. But I don’t want working moms to give up. I don’t want the negative headlines to overwhelm your emotions and cause you to second guess your choice to strive to “have it all.” I’ve always believed that women can “have it all” but “all” is different to every person. It’s not one size fits all. And you may not have “all” every day of the week but as long as you have it sometimes, that’s what matters.

You are stronger than you think. Pause and commit to overcome the challenges of the current time we’re in. You are not alone and I hope this reminds you that you have the strength to not get defeated.

I strongly agree that working moms have been hit the hardest by this pandemic but, I know, we can take a hard hit and keep going. I want it to inspire us. I want it to be a reminder that we can land that new client at 9am but be whisked away into a dungeon of doom with dragons and trolls at 2pm (yes, my kids are boys). We can cook eggs and pancakes for breakfast but order pizza for dinner. We can cry when things get overwhelming but laugh when we gather for a zoom happy hour with friends.

All of this is part of this time we’re in. It’s scary but it shouldn’t be isolating. Don’t read into the headlines and continue to push through the hard times because, I promise, there are good times ahead.

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