This week while I was reading one of my favorite blogs, A Cup of Jo, one post made me literally freeze in my seat, and I swear time stopped for the 7 or 8 minutes it took for me to read it. In Jo’s “My Balance” series, she interviews moms about their days, schedules, children, and how they achieve (or at least try to achieve) balance in their lives. In this post, she interviewed Yolanda Edwards, the Executive Director of Martha Stewart Living magazine. Her interview is essentially the sobering reality that any mom with a full time job faces on a daily basis. I felt all of the hallmarks of a classic freak out working mom moment- scared, guilty, neglectful, disgusted at myself, and when was the last time Mike and I went on a date?? As I read through the post, I could not help but align myself with Yolanda. Call me a casualty of working mom guilt, but at least I can honestly say that Mike and I make our weekends as Jake-filled as possible. While we spend one day with our parents and Jake, we always take one weekend day for just the three of us. Total Jake time. He monopolizes every second of it and I love it. After reading this, however the post still has me wondering how I can budget my time in the best way possible. That, my friends, is definitely a work in progress!
My favorite part of Yolanda’s interview deals with something that hits very close to home with me. My husband and I find ourselves treating our iPhones like they are just another appendage. It’s a phone, not a body part. This is something that needs repeating. It’s a phone, not a body part. I make it a point to be very un-connected to the “outside world” on Jake days. There’s something quite liberating about not checking facebook, twitter or e-mails 12,468 times a day, and especially when that day is a Jake day. Here is what Yolanda had to say about that:
“I think we all need to give ourselves a break and not beat ourselves up. The hardest thing is to be present—when there’s a smart phone in your pocket that’s sending you messages while you’re pushing your kid on the swing or they’re calling “Look, Mom!” and you realize you’re so not looking. When the three of us are together, and have no plans to meet anyone, I try to leave the phone at home, and just bring the camera.”
You can read Yolanda’s interview with Jo here, http://joannagoddard.blogspot.com/2012/07/my-balance-yolanda-edwards-from-martha.html but proceed with caution- and try to leave your guilt at the door. It’s not going to make yourself feel any better, so why even let it in?