Jaclyn Centofanti is a guest writer for this week's Working Mamas column.
I sound like a broken record these days.
“I just need a minute.” “Mommy’s on a call.” “Baby, turn that down.” “Can you watch your brother so I can finish dinner, please?” “Please don’t sit directly in front of my computer.”
My patience is thin, and my confidence in my ability to parent is wavering.
About a year ago, Megan Farrell and I came up with the idea of this column based on the fact that we were struggling through being working moms. It’s hard. And that’s when my kids were in the care of others for eight hours a day.
Prior to this pandemic and our new normal, on Monday through Friday I could drop my kids off and head to work. Once I was at work I could turn on that side of me. The cool, confident one. The one with the hot pink lipstick, funny jokes and big smile.
Know this: For me, having that time to be me, to shine as a woman, as an employee, as a person, is directly related to me being a great mom. The second I could race out the door to pick them up, I would. I’d hug them and squeeze them and smile even bigger than I had at work.
And now … wow. Now I’m working and I’m mommying at the same time, and it’s complete and total chaos 99% of the time.
There’s a quote floating around the universe that says something like: “You were someone before you were their mom, and that person matters.” Right now, it’s hard to see that person. In the moments when I can dedicate an hour or two in silence to working, I try to find her. I actually even put on the lipstick. Seriously.
So, to my fellow working moms, I say this: You are not alone. You are doing hard things, and you will get to the other side.
We are not “working from home.” We are working and we’re at home. We are cooking a million meals. We are cleaning and wrangling. We are managing and we’re barely hanging on.
Take a deep breath and remember how forgiving children are. Even after yelling, even after my little one got a stern talking to last night, she woke up this morning and flew directly into my lap.
Remember that this situation is temporary. You will shine again.
Jaclyn Centofanti is the advertising manager for the Palm Coast Observer. She is a guest columnist for Flagler County Working Mamas. Email [email protected].