When a Full-Time Working Mom Plays SAHM for the Day
I have worked full-time for well, forever and both of my kids are used to me being gone during the day - so when I do take the day off during the week, it’s a special treat for them…and for me. In fact, it’s almost like a holiday – we eat junk, we do special things. But we also need to stick to a school day routine. Those are the days that are really a scream – the days that I try to pretend I’m a stay at home mom…and it’s painfully clear to others that I’m not!
Here are the tell-tale signs that this ain’t how I normally roll:
My SO not cute outfit at school drop-off: My office is casual so I pretty much wear jeans every day. And on days off, I don’t like to ruin my “work clothes” – so the result is a kind of “down on her luck homeless gardener” look. The other moms? Oh – perky little tennis outfits (although I question if any of them actually PLAY), form fitting pilates getups and “don’t f*** with me” PTA ensembles.
The look of terror on my face when my son has a playdate. I’m not used to being responsible for other people’s kids. So when my son and a friend want to run around the playground before we head to our house, I’m usually in a state of panic. My kid can break any limb he wants to – but I can’t having anyone else’s child getting hurt (or killed) on my watch. I’d feel really bad…AND I’d be in suburban social Siberia.
The smile on my face at pick-up. I never get to pick my kids up from school – so when I do, I LOVE it. They come barreling out of the door and straight into my arms. I swing them around, kiss them – and, well it kind of resembles a family who has been reunited after being separated by war. Most of the other moms are screwing around on their phones. This is so old hat to them, that they don’t even have to look up - they can SENSE their kids coming towards them and they just put an arm out, grab them and buckle them into their cars.
I’m the one picking up a pizza at 6pm. I haven’t learned by now that I’m not “that mom”. The one that can effortlessly cook, carpool, sew costumes, wrap gifts and bake without getting a hair out of place. So I usually try to take too much on, like baking cookies for the kids, creating arts and crafts projects, organizing the playroom and gossiping with my neighbors. So by the time my husband comes home, I’m overwhelmed, exhausted and NOT in the mood to cook dinner. Which is how we end up eating pizza for dinner despite my grand plans for whipping up the perfect roast.
I can’t fairly say what would be easier since it has never been an option for me to stay at home with the kiddos, but the grass is always greener.