Can we have it all? Eeeeh…No. Can we slay at being a working mom? Yes!
First of all, Moms, do any of us actually feel like we have motherhood mastered? Do we lie in bed at night thinking, “Oh yeah…killed the parenting game today. Dead.” No. We don’t. We all feel the same sense of anxiety constantly creeping in and telling us that we could do more, be better. Throw a career on top of a pot that is already boiling over and it’s amazing that we aren’t all wandering around, heavily medicated, in straitjackets. To sum up a million feelings in one generic statement: it’s hard. I am no different than any parent reading this. I get feedback a lot from other moms who think I have it all figured out or that I am this amazing Mom/ #GIRLBOSS (Thank you social media for that illusion). I am by no means perfect, but I have figured out a few things to make it all manageable. Trust me, I am still one-spilled-snack-in-their-bed-that-they-are-not-allowed-to-eat-in away from a nervous breakdown, but this is how I keep balance in my life.
If I show you enough houses…you meet these two cuties at some point.
I have two wonderful children: Liam James, 9, and Isla London, 6. Just like any parent, they are my world and the reason that I work so hard. With that being said, they come first. Period. I am very fortunate to have a career where I set my own schedule and have moderate flexibility. It would be so easy for me to say, “Eh. I can miss this baseball game and schedule an appointment. Come on… he is playing like, 50 games.” Nope. I won’t do it. I miss none. Their games, practices, lessons, school pickups, etc. are the first things on my calendar and everything else works around them. They are my most important appointment of every day. Liam is old enough now that he notices that I am the mom who is always there, and I would never have it any other way. There have been and always will be listings, clients, and deals that I will miss out on because of this choice, but this is a commitment that I make every day to choose my children first.
Them. Always first.
We are not robots. We are not machines. We need to take care of ourselves properly before we can even begin to take care of anyone else. Whatever that is to you: eating a certain way, working out, running, reading, watching Bravo (raises hand), do that thing. Do that thing that helps you shut down your mind even if only for a half hour a day. For me, that thing is Pure Barre. I’m not a morning person. I hate waking up and loooooove to sleep. But, every day I wake up at 5:45 to get there at 6:30 for class (confession: lately I have been going to some later morning classes, too…but still). Before the sun comes up is the only time of day that I can go where it does not interfere with work or family. My only excuse at that time of day would be myself, and I try not to let myself down 😉 .
My love for this place is for an entirely different blog. It gives me the sense of strength and peace that I need. It is not even so much about what it does for me physically. It is, but it isn’t. It makes my mind stronger. For that hour, my only focus is getting through the movements and focusing on the one muscle that we are currently working. I’m not thinking about real estate transactions or what my kids will eat for dinner. It’s freeing. It’s my hour to myself and when I start my day that way, I am a better Mom, a better real estate agent, and just an all around happier person. So find that thing that gives you clarity, makes you feel good, and make a practice of doing it every day.
Pure Barre Perrysburg (*The only time I have ever looked like this in that building)
Ask For And Accept Help.
This one. This I’m the worst at, but have committed to becoming better. I am definitely someone who likes to do everything myself because I think that I can… until it’s clear that I can’t. This summer I was definitely trying to do THE most. I was working almost exclusively from home with both kids. *Insert nervous laughter here* This did not work out that well. I am not a part time gal just dabbling in real estate. This is my full time career and my passion. I hustle.
Other realtors will understand this, but our schedule changes rapidly. You can wake up thinking you have a “free day” where you can take your kids to the pool, and by noon, you have five showings scheduled. Real estate is fast paced and children are not 😉 I was way over-scheduled and not asking for enough help. The couple months of trying to be everything to everyone culminated in what was not my finest hour: basically a complete breakdown one evening where I felt like I was failing at everything. I had to accept, through tears, that I cannot run a growing business and have the kids with me all day long. I am going to look into childcare options for next summer. I have never had to do that and we have never had anyone outside of family watch the kids. But, you know what? Life changes and we have to adapt. It does not make any of us a bad mom to ask for help.
Along the lines of help… if you know me, or have seen any of my pics, I love a clean and organized home. It’s kind of my jam but I also spend a lot of time on it. Although I felt like it was sort of ridiculous and bougie, I had a cleaning service come for the very first time ever recently. When the doorbell rang, it was like Christmas morning! I probably overwhelmed them with my gratitude and excitement. I came home from the office to a spotless house, and it was AH-MAZ-ING.
Can I clean my house? For sure! Would that time be better spent working on my business or cuddling with my kids? A hundred times yes. We can only do so many things in a day ourselves and that was a tough lesson for me to learn but I’m grateful for it now.
It takes a village and this is my right hand man.
Gals, we are all trying to navigate this “Working Mom” thing in our own way. Let’s encourage one another instead of tearing each other down. If we prioritize, we can have very successful careers AND be awesome parents. This is how I judge my parenting success: I have two happy, healthy children who can’t get enough hugs, kisses, and don’t want to let go at bedtime. They know they are loved beyond measure. We can’t be everything or do it all, but as long as your kids feel that same love, kudos to you, Momma.