Many of my girlfriends who have recently started back at work are finding that, much to their great dismay, their little ones are catching colds and flu’s through exposure to bugs at their crèches and kindergartens. This in turn, creates great distress for these Mother’s, who are compelled to take time off work whilst also feeling anxious and responsible for creating stress and unease in their work environment.
Mothers (and some fathers) are then forced to decide between their paternal desire to be with their children or disappoint their employer or clients.
Often it helps to step back and take a grander view of situations like these. Let’s ask ourselves whether in five years time your employer/clients will really remember you having the odd day off to be with your child/children???
However I would almost guarantee that as a mother, you will remember. Like most mothers, no doubt you too, will look at your children throughout your lifetime and question yourself as a parent. Wondering if you were “emotionally available” enough for them or if you were you “physically present” enough times for them to feel centered and secure in the world? You probably question your capacity already. I know I do.
This is a predicament for all mothers. Those who work from home and have deadlines, or mothers committed in other ways, all feel “squeezed” at times. We need to remind ourselves to be still, to listen to our own needs, our own hearts, rather than the demands of our outer circle of influence. Enable ourselves to gain clarity on our priorities.
It’s hard being a parent. With time, I believe we become masters at the art of juggling life’s hurdles.
When considering our work capacity let’s remember that most women are worth their weight in gold. They certainly contribute their pound of flesh, as they say. Our productivity and ingenuity are solid and most reasonable employees recognize this.
It is my opinion that it is better to live with a grumpy boss for a few days, than that scornful, ever-present voice in your head.
So give yourself a break and follow your heart!
Call work and tell them that you won’t be available to come in today. Let go of any guilt and try to focus on simply being available for your child.
Have a lap day.
Sit down on the couch and let your child lay all over you while they sleep or watch a movie. Forget about the washing or the unsent emails, ignore the phone and simply put your feet up. Grab a book or a magazine or lie beside your little one and have a snooze yourself.
Be in the moment – the moment of being a mother who is needed, a mother who is both physically and emotionally available. Smile wholeheartedly, knowing that you have surrendered to life and loving that tender bundle in your arms.
With blessings of love to you and yours,
Dr Jennifer Barham-Floreani
. . . . .