They say that America’s working mothers are more unhappy than they’ve ever been in history, and now I really understand where they’re coming from. It’s so easy to fall into that “exhaustion” hole and always be groping to find a way out that happiness seems truly distant.
I used to work from home, and thus didn’t have to spend an hour and fifteen minutes each day getting to and from work, and I didn’t experience that horrible exhaustion factor so many mothers suffer from daily. Now that I do live with that commute, I, too, grapple with finding rest time, moments for myself, and ways to be the best mother and wife I can be.
It’s ridiculously hard. Our husbands want us to be there for them, but we’re so busy packing lunches, cleaning house, walking the dog and making the dinners that by the time we stop moving it’s 10:30 at night and our spouses want to do the bedtime tango.
Delegating responsibility is key. Our children and spouses, if they want us to be there for them, must be there for us. Our children must learn to pack their own lunches and our husbands must learn that if they don’t help with making and cleaning up the dinners, bedtime tangos will become fewer and far between, because we just aren’t necessarily “Super Woman.”
If we want to be happy, we need those around us to lend a helping hand. It’s impossible to be truly happy when our eyes are glazed over with exhaustion and our entire family thinks of us as the “doer” in the household.
So have a family meeting. Explain to everyone what new tasks they will have to tend to, because you just can’t “do it all.” Take the time to teach them whatever it is they need to know to help, then see if the exhaustion factor eases up and time for yourself and your family works its way back into the picture.
Who knows, hopefully happiness will follow and maybe, just maybe our children will realize how much time we have been putting into their lunches and our husbands will realize how much time we’ve been putting into mealtime. Finally, maybe, just maybe we’ll be appreciated for the amazing women we really are, and maybe we can do the bedtime tango with our hubbies like we did before the little ones came along. And finally, hopefully, yes very hopefully, we’ll be the happy, fulfilled working moms we have always strived to be.