I’m a full-time working mom and I hate it. I mean, I don’t hate my job… luckily, but I just hate the idea of having to spend just a few hours a day with my kids. My routine is the same everyday. Monday thru Friday (and every other Saturday) the alarm runs-off at around 7:00 am; and if I’m lucky (yes, I said lucky) is my son who runs to my bedroom to wake me up. As annoying as it could sound I just love it, maybe because it’s the only time that I get to see him in the mornings before we take off. I get ready as fast as I can while they try to tell me stuff that I don’t understand anyway because I’m so distracted and hurried to get ready. I grab a cup of coffee and we get in to the car. Lately my youngest can’t stand letting me go without giving me a kiss. My heart breaks every time he asks me for a good-bye kiss and, of course, it doesn’t matter if the car is already running I need to go back and kiss him. It also breaks my heart when he tells me things like: “Mommy when you go back from work I want to do something fun with you.” I can’t imaging him waiting the whole day hoping for the last part of the day when he gets to spend some time with his momma.
Then I work for eight consecutive hours (ok, seven if we take lunch) and then I finally head home, tired, sometimes stressed and often trying hard to leave on time so I get to pick up my boys again. Unfortunately, I often don’t have time to do it and their dad picks them up instead. And it really makes me upset. The days that I get to leave on time from work the whole idea of my kids’ happy faces looking at me, surprised, that mommy came to pick them up, makes my day. That’s why sometimes, to make it even more special I even get a little “surprise” like a lollipop or something like that. Then, we have a “whole” two hours to do something. (Notice the word “whole” is sarcastic). Yes, I pick them up at six, and between having dinner and get ready to go to bed there is really no time for anything. And according to certain articles (and people) 9 is not even early enough! But imagine if I send them to bed at 8 I would cut an entire hour from our already rushed schedule. Whenever we can we go out for dinner and others we go back home and hung out until is time to get take a bath and then bed. A little prayer before sleep (ok, maybe they will watch their Ipads for a couple minutes) and that’s it. Repeat all over again the next day.
According to a DailyMail’s article working moms in the U.S. spend only 90 minutes with their children each day. 90 minutes we get to see our see our little miracles every day. That’s only 22 days a year! According to the same article psychologists believe that quality vs quantity is more important in terms of time spent with our loved ones but the study also shows that working mothers spend more time on physical care, including feeding, washing and dressing, while fathers devote more time to education and recreation, such as playing sports or helping with homework. (DailyMail, 2011). Our kids need to be fed; washed and dressed but how much quality time can we create when we are busy trying to keep them alive? I’m not saying we should all quit our jobs when there is really a need for one but it just doesn’t feel right. At least from my perspective working hours are becoming too long, especially for a mother when every minute counts.