I’ve got Sand in my Shoes: The Working (and Work at Home) Mother Playground Challenge

She’s wearing a sun dress with beach sandals. I’m wearing slacks with work pumps. She’s ready for a summertime picnic. I’m game for a boardroom meeting. At first glance, we’re worlds apart – this work-at-home mom and I (a workplace professional). We are evidently at two different spectrums. But, here we are at 6 PM with our kids at the playground. The kids are swinging away with no recognition of what we’re dressed in. They are just happy. So, if they’re happy, then who cares?

I was jealous of this woman, who apparently had all the time the world with her brood (and looking marvelous). But, then she got a call on her mobile which appeared to be important. I finally got a glimpse of a mirror-dimension. This mom was struggling to hold a serious, adult conversation on the phone, all the while tending to her one kid on the ground and the other on the swings. It was impossible! And, there I realized that we weren’t so different after all. “That’s me too!” I thought.

The Working Mother Research Institute recently noted in the report “What Moms Choose” that nearly half of the moms in their study (49 percent of working and 47 percent of stay-at-home mothers) admit they are their own toughest critics.

I reflected a bit more on the playground and thought, “Heck! She just may be envious of me.” I get to go to work and do something that I love five days a week. Lucky me, really!

I’m tired of the “mom mentality” that is conducive to putting these types of moms down. We are more alike than we think – we rarely have a moment to ourselves and want so much to make our children happy. At the end of the day (or workday), we’re all ambitious mothers who want the same things – a bit of sanity and to raise good citizens of the world.

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