We are now in the throes of preparing for the kids to go back to school. I can see now that I will survive summer vacation, but fall is at our doorsteps and all the pressures of balancing work, school, marriage, and health have come back to life. I face so many challenges as a married mom of four who is trying to build a company. I’m having dreams of back-to school-nights, sports and activity sign-ups and orientations, policing my kids’ electronic devices, enforcing earlier bedtimes, and getting them up on time. We just never have a drama-free week. Forgotten meds, wrong shirt on field trip day, wrong clothes or shoes for after-school sports. It’s a constant game of Whac-A-Mole.
When my phone rings and certain numbers pop up, I’ll cringe but answer. Because I am a mom. There are too many “little catches” I make that couldn’t be summed up in an orientation guide. I am not just a creature of habit—I am a “catcher” by habit. I catch everyone’s problems and stresses. I am the absorber of stress. And when I answer the phone, there is always an issue requiring immediate attention.
“The Mom’s Code”
I’ve heard of a “man code” many times. Okay I get it, there are some unwritten rules that a stand-up guy should be adhere to. Well, as a stressed-out working mom, and I believe a “Mom’s Code” could help all of us mothers out there.
An important question is whether this code could apply to working moms and stay-at-home moms alike. I was a stay-at-home mom for six years. I left the workforce when my oldest, who was three-and-a-half at the time, needed open heart surgery. Then we ended up moving to Seoul, South Korea, when we had four children, aged three months to five years old. So I was a stay-at-home wife and mom and did not know if I would ever go back to the workforce. I was wildly busy trying to maintain a sane life in a foreign country. Now back in the U.S. for the past several years, I am I working non-stop to get my new business off the ground.
As a stay-at-home mom I wore a ponytail most days because blow-drying my hair took too much time. But I was in better shape because I got to work out. Working moms really struggle with finding enough time to work out so many of them are constantly trying to shed that extra few pounds. Of course stay-at-home moms often wish they could shed a few pounds too if they’re eating their kids’ leftover food. Moms’ stress shows up as bitten fingernails and roots that need to be touched up.
The bottom line is that both stay-at-home and working moms are stressed out, and largely about the same things. So why don’t we all agree to one code? Let’s all agree to:
- Limit the mama drama
- Let go of the guilt
- Save a friend when she’s drowning
- Abide by a noncompetition clause
- Get tech-savvy so we can look after our kids
- Not judge other moms
- Nourish our souls with Girls’ Night Outs
- Band together against mom tormentors
- Remember our sexy selves
- Stop trying to appear perfect