Season 10. I am currently on season 10 of Grey’s Anatomy. It took me 10 seasons, 12 episodes, and 39 seconds to figure out why I love this series so much. No, it isn’t the 100 different love stories wrapped in drama, it is because it is the first series I have personally seen about women who would do anything for their careers. If you’re not familiar with the show, it a series that follows surgeons in their “every day lives” revealing the concept that life is in fact, not black and white, but grey. More so, they sacrifice happiness, sanity, love, family, bearing children, all for their love of saving lives. Some days they have it all. Some days they have nothing. What makes me love Grey’s Anatomy so much is that it was subconsciously and slowly removing my “working mom” guilt.
When I had my first son, staying home was the route I decided to take. I figured most of my paycheck would go towards daycare so being a stay at home mom was the best option financially. Let me be the first in mom-blog world to say that being a stay at home mom made me depressed, or exacerbated my depression, I should say. I couldn’t handle it. There was no contact with adults, besides my husband who I only saw between dinner and bedtime, and then I was back to being “alone” the next day as a stay at home mom. I loved my son and I loved spending time with him but being a stay at home mom was just not a good match for me.
The hardest part of being a stay at home mom was dealing with the guilt of not wanting to be home with my children. Was something wrong with me? Shouldn’t I want to be home with them? Shouldn’t I be rolling around on the floor laughing and playing with them and watching my favorite daytime shows and enjoying life? That’s not at all what being a stay at home mom is like, at least not for me. It was me and my son… and not too long after it became me and my two sons. Wake up, change diapers, feed children, change diapers, potty, snack, potty and diapers, lunch, potty and diapers, nap time (for them, clean up time for me). They wake up… I dreaded the wake up time every day. More diapers and potty and another snack. Start prepping dinner, play with the boys, referee the boys, clean up some more, check the clock to see when my husband will arrive, finish cooking dinner, make sure the house is decent enough before my husband arrives, diaper change, dinner. That’s the dream for some, but I just couldn’t do.
I experienced a sort of isolation I had never felt before and it was probably even worse for me being that I became and mom and moved into a brand new city all around the same time. Not only was I staying at home every day and getting minimal adult interaction in, I was away from family and all of my friends were in other states. I started an Etsy shop, I exercised every morning, I tried to do things to occupy my time and mind besides the usual, but something was still missing. I wanted to work.
Becoming a teacher was my out. Sure most of my paycheck would go to daycare, but I was losing my sanity here. Becoming a teacher made me feel whole… but the guilt remained. Why didn’t I want to stay home? I must not love my children? Something’s wrong with me.
10 seasons, 12 episodes, and 39 seconds into Grey’s Anatomy and the two main female characters, Meredith and Christina, are arguing about the routes they’ve taken as women, both dedicated to their careers but one with a family while the other gave her chance for a family up just to focus on her career. It is in that moment that I realize I have been glued to a series about strong women who love their careers! Why can’t I love my career? Why do I have to feel guilty for looking forward to work? I don’t! I love working (most days), I love getting a break from my children to teach other children, and I love being reunited with my children at the end of the day (most days, haha).
I am not perfect. But I know what makes me happy. Teaching and being a mom makes me happy. Juggling the two roles, imperfectly, make me happy! And if mama ain’t happy… well, you know the rest.
My name is Britany, and I LOVE being a working mom!