Things They Can’t Say: Making It Work Mom

Heather Hogan writes her Making It Work Mom blog to chronicle her stories of life in the fast lane.  She is a working mom to three very busy children whom are navigating their way through tweenhood, boyhood, and elementary school.  She is overworked and underpaid and loves every minute of it.  She finds laughter especially paired with wine and good friends is always the best medicine.  In between working and schlepping her children here and there Heather can be found posting instagram pics of her adorable children at makingitworkmom and making the occasional random tweet @makingitworkmom .  And because there is never enough social media she is also trying to start up her facebook page.  

The Mom I Was Meant To Be

 

Thirteen years ago my arms wrapped around my blossoming belly I would spend endless hours daydreaming about my future family and fantasizing about the mother I knew I would be (back then I had endless hours to do things like that).   I was confident in my mothering abilities, self- doubt and second thinking had not worked its way into my repertoire yet.  Thirteen years ago the possibilities were endless and my mothering skills had yet to be tested.

And now…well now is different.

Thirteen years ago…

I was sure my children would always wear cute clothes that I would find impossibly great deals on at fabulous stores.  I couldn’t even imagine my children leaving the house with dirty faces, un-brushed teeth, and tangled hair.

Now…

I find myself triumphantly pulling a pair of shorts out of my daughter’s dresser and announcing “I found a clean pair!” like I have won the lottery.   And more times than I would like to admit I have assured myself that teeth would be brushed doubly good at night to make up for the missed brushing in the morning as we rushed out the door. (Hangs head in shame.)

Thirteen years ago…

I knew I would be a working mom, a working mom who was super organized, who did her best while she was at work and then came home and was still at her best as a mother.  I was the mom who could HAVE IT ALL.

Now…

I know that having it all is a myth.  Not possible.  I am still a working mom.  And some days I am a good working mom and some days I am just barely making it.  Doesn’t matter either way it has to be enough and I can’t beat myself up about it.

Thirteen year ago…

I knew that we would have family meals every night of yummy, healthy home cooked goodness.  I would bake delicious treats that my children would gobble up (in moderate amounts of course) and I would do fun crafts with my children.

 

Now…

Cooking is more about a quick fix.  There is no time for full meals, this month my children are lucky if I put their sandwich or buttered pasta on a real plate instead of a paper plate.

Chips Ahoy are staple in our pantry.

And well I never really liked crafting that much and lose interest in most projects pretty quickly.

Thirteen years ago…

I knew the mother I wanted to be before I actually was a mother.  My expectations were high and I felt like mothering perfection was within my reach.

Now…

I dashed into the CVS this evening after a full day of work, a couple of hours spent sorting cheer uniforms for my daughters’ cheerleading teams, and on my way to the practice fields with my 6 year old.  I was hot and sweaty.  My hair was a frizzy mess and I was functioning on my third straight day of less than five hours sleep.

As I walked through the door, I hesitated, all of sudden conscious of my rather disheveled and harried appearance.  I urged my youngest to hurry and pick out her treat (her before dinner treat) and set my purchases on the counter.  The cashier eyed me with a slightly wary look.  I half-heartedly tried to straighten my rather skewed ponytail and then flashed my brightest smile well aware, in that moment, of the smear of mascara beneath my left eye.   I told myself that I would fake my happy mom persona.  If I looked happy certainly my appearance would not be so important.

But then I realized, even as another part of my brain registered the fact that once again I had forgotten to buy deodorant for myself and would have to sneak my tween daughter’s for another day,  that I actually didn’t have to fake it.  That even though 13 years ago I could never imagine myself standing in the CVS disheveled and harried holding my 6 year olds hand while she chatters non-stop at my side and the 18 year old cashier looks at me with something close to pity in her eyes that this reality wasn’t so bad.

That I couldn’t imagine myself any other way

though I am not the mom I thought I would be I am the mom I was meant to be

The mom with a quick laugh

The mom who is a problem solver

The mom who does too much, but usually manages to get it all done

The mom who mentally files away this CVS story to be told later on to her mom friends who will appreciate it and relate to it, hopefully over a glass of wine, or beer, or some other cocktail

A mom who enjoys being a mom

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Comments

  1. Ahhh…two of my favorite bloggers in one spot! Heather, you already know how much I love you and your blog but I’ll say it again. It is a staple over here. I think if we were neighbors, we’d be best buds enjoying that cocktail and sharing stories of days like that because as you know, I live the same life (mascara smudge and all). Love you and love your blog.
    AnnMarie recently posted..I Don’t Wanna…My Profile

  2. I think the mother that does it all while looking perfect and being happy all the time is one step away from being committed. No one is REALLY that perfect. It’s much better to just enjoy it. 
    Nessa recently posted..Life Isn’t Supposed to Be PerfectMy Profile

  3. I don’t think any of us are quite what we imagined we might be! And by the way, I LOVE paper plates! Dishes and laundry are never-ending at my house…
    Sandy
    momof12 recently posted..Almost Like Vacation AgainMy Profile

  4. It’s always fabulous that we turn out to be what we never thought we would or could be, but that is exactly what we need to be?
    Alison recently posted..Thirty SixMy Profile

  5. “A mom who enjoys being a mom”. That’s what it’s all about, I’m sure!
    Mrs. Jen B recently posted..When I’m 33My Profile

  6. Oh, well…..42 years later I won’t even begin to remember what kind of mom I thought I would be, but I can say this….I wasn’t, I was the best I knew how to be but I still often wonder if that was enough.  Love this!

    • I think I could spend a lifetime second guessing myself on all things related to mommyhood (and I am still 6 months from my first one being a teen), but it is not worth it. I figure if I am really stinking at something my kids will let me know soon enough!
      Heather recently posted..Shell’s Things They Can’t SayMy Profile

  7. I can SO relate to this story. Things like this happen to me all the time. That’s why my advice to all new moms is “Be flexible.” Because I know what is coming for them.
    Jennifer recently posted..Sum It Up {Random Thoughts}My Profile

  8. This post reminds me of a saying that I try to keep in mind: It’s not about having what you want, it’s about wanting what you have. Love this post as it is all about wanting the messy bits along with everything else!
    Mel recently posted..Nugget Had a Little LambMy Profile

  9. Oh how naive we are when we haven’t had kids or are still pregnant haha.  Great post!
    stephanie @ babe’s rockin’ mami recently posted..Mom and BabeMy Profile

  10. Awesome… a mom who likes being a mom! I think that many of us envisioned motherhood differently than how it turned out. Even now I still find myself trying to figure out how I can do things how I imagined them… it never works though. Real life steps in and wakes me up from that dream!
    Jackie recently posted..Back to school shopping with Cookie’s KidsMy Profile

  11. I also have a six year old and what you are saying about not much sleep etc. is so true, although on balance motherhood has been about as difficult as I imagined.
    Jewel recently posted..My Own Personal Mount Everest – 1My Profile

  12. Sounds like you have it all.

  13. Forgetting deodorant since becoming a mom has been one of my biggest downfalls. While I was working, I kept one in my car, in my purse and in my office drawer. That way I had it ready whenever my brain would fire and say, “Oh man! We forgot deodorant AGAIN!!!”
    We all just do our best and Heather, with three kids and the schedule that they have on top of your own…I think you are doing an amazing job…frizzy hair, smudged mascara, paper plates and all!!
    Kristen recently posted..The Hunger Games DVD Release CountdownMy Profile

  14. It sounds very much like my life. i’d love to laugh about it over drinks with you.
    Robbie recently posted..Friday Fragments #7My Profile

  15. I may not be a working mom but even I have had those harried CVS trips. Good thing my hair is short and I can just throw a cap on!!! :)
    Susi recently posted..Follow Friday Four Fill in Fun #75My Profile

  16. I love you….
    if you were near me I’d stalk you and make you my new bestie…
    Not a Perfect Mom recently posted..Since When Is It OkayMy Profile

  17. This is so me. I thought I would have it all together and I do sometimes (rarely) but more often I am the one looking disheveled while Evil is yacking my ear off non stop. Then, I remember I forgot to pack Boo’s ball glove so I say a Spongebob curse word like, “barnacles”

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