parenting

My Stay at Home or Working Mom Limbo

There are many moments throughout my day where I feel frozen and I’m aware of this lack of movement and desperate to push froward and yet I hang there memorized by the decisions and paths of possibility. Each possible path hovers in front of me like bubbles blown from soapy water, glimmering and promising perfection for a brief time before being burst by my son’s tiny fingers. Except it’s not my son bursting these bubbles it’s my own doubt. Some days it seems all I can do to be a mom and a wife and I seriously doubt if I could do anything more. Other days I feel bored and wonder how boring my son will think I am when he grows up and takes me to career day at school. Any other venture seems doomed to crash and burn leaving regret and wasted resources as my only reward. I think of all the times I’ve failed at things in the past, how many times I’ve stumbled and given up. Then I look at my child chasing bubbles with wonderment and simple joy in his face and I know how much there is at stake if I spread our precious resources even thinner only to fail. What’s worse failing where he can see in a big immediate sense or failing in tiny ways every day as I forget who I am besides his mother? Being his mother fills me so completely with warmth and joy but I fear that one day when he is grown I may just cease to exist when he no longer needs me as he does now. So I’m frozen between these two eventualities and unable to make a decision. I don’t know how much of it is fear of failing my son and I don’t know how much of it is that ugly genetic mental illness looming in the depths of my head. I’m wandering blindly and groping for the next steps hoping that there is a light and the end of this tunnel if only I open my eyes to see it. Perhaps I’ll really try to go back to school since the reality is any of these entry level jobs I could actually get right now would make me hate everything. Or maybe I’ll find a way to be content with my lot as mother and not fear what will happen when mother is no longer needed 24/7.  There’s always that debate of presents vs. presence and obviously if I made more money then I could get more presents for my son.  But if I had some absence would that make the presence better quality or just make him feel alone?

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