Formerly, I was a teacher educating a hundred kids each week. I loved my work. I loved the mentoring, friendships, and being a part of helping those teenagers develop into the kind of adults that could change the world. It was hard work, but I went home each day with a sense of accomplishment and the drive to work harder the next morning.
Being a Mother
Now I’m a mom. Sometimes it feels like my greatest accomplishment during the course of a day is starting the dishwasher. Or folding eight loads of laundry, wiping yet another snotty nose, or reading one more bedtime story.
I often find myself collapsed on the couch at the end of the day with no energy, no sense of accomplishment, and certainly no drive to get up and do it again and again and again.
Recently a fellow mother shared that she frequently told virtual strangers that she used to be amazing. That she used to do dream up creative projects for her company and execute them with precision. That she used to get paid a lot for her skills. And now…
A Beautiful Transition
For those who had careers before becoming mothers, the transition is both a beautiful and painful one. Beautiful to be entrusted by God with one of his children. But it’s sometimes hard to compare the achievements of the workforce with your homemaking accomplishments. I struggle when I compare the incredible feeling of returning from a successful high school mission trip I’d planned to the feeling of managing to get the kids to bed on time.
Do I believe that mothering is one of the single most important jobs in the whole world? Absolutely. So how do I get my head and my heart together on this?
One way is to remind myself that as a teacher, I was one part of the puzzle for those kids’ growth. As a lawyer, I would have been very instrumental in one area of a client’s life. As an NGO worker in the Middle East, I could effect change in a village’s economy. But for my three small children, I am the world. Their father and I are their whole world.
And as I fold their clothes and wipe their noses and buckle their seat belts again, I am helping to grow my world’s future.
I used to be someone important. I still am.
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Joelle Yamada writes from Texas.© 2002 - 2023, AnswersForMe.org. All rights reserved. Click here for content usage information.