Being a mom is the hardest job of all time. I don't care what anyone says. It's hard. And I have a hard job.
I am a couples' therapist and an author. All day long in the office I see couples who fight, couples who can't stand being in the same room with each other, couples who are grieving, who feel betrayed, who struggle. It's hard work. It can be exhausting. At the end of the day, I'm tired. And then I come home to my children and the work really begins.
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Today, my kids are teenagers, so my parenting work is mostly driving around, from lacrosse practice to choir to track meets to the mall. And then it's home to make dinner and help with homework, studying for SAT's, and applying to college. And then to the orthodontist and dealing with the girlfriend problems and boy issues and my kids moaning, "I have nothing to wear!" And then there are the mood swings—theirs and mine.
When the kids were little, it was really hard too. Chasing them around, trying to get them to eat; to sleep in their own beds; to catch them before they fell, broke something, hurt themselves or ate bugs. And don't even mention the giving birth part. (Did I mention the 36 hours of labor?)
Mother's Day is the one day of the year when the sacrifices and difficulties of managing a life of working and being a mother should be appreciated. It can be a real challenge to balance work and children. When you're at work, you feel like you should be home. When you're with the kids, you feel guilty that you aren't working hard enough.
Being a mom is a full-time job. So if you have a career as well, you are constantly working two full-time jobs. One day out of the year, a homemade card and pancakes in bed is not too much to ask for. A massage, a manicure, flowers, some attention. That's all I want. (Well, maybe a new Coach bag too.) Actually, all I really want is some acknowledgement that the major sacrifices that I have made, every day of my children's lives since the moment of conception, is recognized and appreciated.
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And if you're a husband, it's important to make the mother of your children feel appreciated—or the resentment she feels when you don't notice her struggles can erode the foundation of your marriage. Mothers want acknowledgement on Mother's Day not only from their kids, but from the father of their children. And if a wife and mother doesn't feel appreciated for the major balancing job she does, the physical exhaustion she experiences, and the emotional depletion that comes with mothering, she may turn to someone else for emotional renewal. Keep reading...
More Mother's Day advice from YourTango: