My daughter Megan, mother to my grandsons, is going back to work. She was and is an early childhood educator. After taking one year off of work to try her hand at being a stay-at-home mother to Bubby and Mac, she's decided to go back to work. Full time.
I'm not thrilled.
But I support her.
One hundred percent.
Megan needs to work. Not because her household needs the money, but because Megan needs to do and be what she is. And what she is is the very most awesome teacher of young ones. A very most awesome teacher who, in order to be the very most awesome of mothers, too, needs to do what she—without a doubt—has been called to do.
This wasn't an easy decision for Megan. She wanted desperately to be the kind of mom who stays at home with her sons, who does crafts and activities and outings with them. And is content with that. She tried her hardest—her busy calendar and plethora of Pinterest projects around the house and put into use for parties in the past year prove it.
But she wasn't content. And that's understandable. Squishing yourself into a box in which others want you to fit makes for a most uncomfortable position. And a most unhappy mommy.
By going back to work as a teacher, Megan will be a better mommy. A content mommy. As her mother, I want Megan to be content. A content mommy, a content teacher. Thankfully Preston agrees, supports her return to work and the extra work that might make for him, too.
So why am I not thrilled?
Well, I must be honest: It's because I want my grandsons to be with their mother. At least most of the time. Most of Megan's time come August 1, though, will be dedicated to full-time teacher mode, as no part-time first-grade teaching opportunities currently exist in her town.
A part-time teaching position would be best for all concerned, Megan and I both agree. But this full-time opportunity, despite the challenges that will accompany it, will be far better for her, her kids, her household than the full-time mommy gig she worked—and really did often enjoy, I must add—this past year.
The full-time mommy gig is hard. It can be frustrating, endless, monotonous, thankless. Most importantly, it's not for everyone. I'm glad Megan realizes that, accepts that instead of trying to be someone she's not. (As well as someone who's not putting to use that expensive private-school education many of us are still paying on, if you'd like to know another brutal truth.)
Yes, part-time work might provide a little more balance in Megan's wants and needs, but a full-time position as a first-grade teacher is what she has to work with. And she will indeed make it work—while making sure things work for my grandsons, too.
Bubby managed to survive and thrive with Mommy working part-time during his first couple of years. This won't be all that different for Mac, as his hours beyond those Megan worked as a part-timer with Bubby will be spent napping at a well-researched and thoroughly vetted daycare center. As long as the bed's comfy and cool, Mac likely won't give a hoot if it's Mommy or daycare personnel twiddling their thumbs in the next room while he sleeps the entire afternoon, as he's wont to do. I have no doubt Mac will survive and thrive, too. Probably even better than he might have if Mommy didn't work, thanks to the social interaction he'll get with kiddos his own age at the daycare center.
And Bubby? Well, Bubby will be delighted to see Mommy off and on throughout the day as he will attend preschool at the very same school where his Mommy's working. When Megan gave him the news she was returning to teaching, a big ol' smile spread across Bubby's face, she reported, as he expressed genuine pleasure at hearing Mommy's good news.
Bubby's reaction to the news of Megan returning to her true calling is admirable. And it's how all of her family, friends, fans should be responding—by being genuinely supportive. A mommy's got to do what a mommy's got to do. And what Megan Mommy's got to do is get into the classroom and be awesome with other kids. So she can be awesome at home with her own kids, my grandkids.
What more could a mother want for her daughter?
What more could a grandma want for her grandsons?
Congratulations, Megan! I applaud you. I support you. One hundred percent.
Removing the child factor and what you did/do as a working or stay-at-home mom, would you rather work outside the home full time, part time, or not at all?