Dear mama who just dropped her kids off at daycare,
I see you. Five days a week, I see you. I am you. Your day may look like it’s just getting started, but we both know you’ve been up before the sun. Pumping. Squeezing in quiet time. Doing chores without any interruptions. Making lunches. Checking the fridge to see if you need to make a grocery run on your lunch break.
You’re tired before their seatbelts even buckle. Yet, you answer all 103 questions they have about the stranger driving the car in front of you and where you’re going even though you go to the same place every single day. You smile. You muster up energy. You remind yourself these are the days you prayed for. And you really are grateful.
Tired, but oh so grateful.
As you drive and are allowed 10 seconds of silence, you begin to wonder what it would be like to be able to stay home with your kids. Would mornings be slower and less chaotic? Would you ever have to worry about missing their first steps? Would you be a better mom?
But then you arrive at their daycare and must convince yourself that saying goodbye to them every single day does not make you a bad mom.
I see you, full-time working mama. I feel your unwarranted guilt. I understand being pulled in so many directions. I recognize you.
I am you.
I’m mindful of the way you pull yourself together before you walk into your office so no one even questions the thoughts running through your head.
And the way you show up every single day, giving your best even though you won’t see half of your paycheck. It all too quickly goes to daycare fees.
Or your prayers for strength, clarity, and assurance that you are doing the right thing for your family. Yeah, I get those too.
Don’t even get me started on your reluctance to cook dinner. That’s the last thing you want to do after spending a day away from your kids and finally having the opportunity to curl up and read a book with them. Yet, I see you do it anyway. Because you do what you must. You do what your family needs.
I see your heart.
Your schedule looks like a jigsaw puzzle. But you always solve it.
Your days seem like there is no room for flexibility, yet you manage every unexpected sickness, setback, and obstacle as if you penciled it into your calendar.
Finally, it’s bedtime. You feel that pang of guilt as you celebrate. You feel like you’ve barely seen them all day, and yet you’re glad to close the door and leave them behind. Oh, the mom guilt is so intense.
You use the rest of your day to catch up with your husband, clean the kitchen, open the mail, get yourself ready for bed, and start thinking about tomorrow.
Because all too soon, tomorrow is here. And it starts all over again.
I’m here to tell you that you are not alone. That your feelings are justified. That God’s mercies are new every single morning. That His strength will sustain you. That you are doing a great job.
So, give yourself grace. A pat on the back. And treat yourself to coffee. Because you, full-time working mama, are doing a great job!