Confessions of a Work At Home Mom

work at home- Parenting resources by ZenParent

Till only a couple of months back I had failed to comprehend the meaning of the phrase ‘A work from home mother’. I thought somewhere someone had messed up the words. And I even ended up correcting a friend who belonged to the corporate world by saying that ‘oh you mean work at home mother don’t you?’because in my world, all mothers worked at home …for the whole day. And although I had bloated with pride that day when I thought that finally the world was acknowledging that what a woman did at home was ‘work’, I realized only later what it all meant and was in awe that such an arrangement could also exist.

I was always hesitant to leave my house & kids to work in an office and for me the WFH situation was tailor made. And I couldn’t wait to plunge into something that sounded so achievable and simple. But over time I have come to realise that this line of work though has its many high moments, is not easy & hassle freeas it sounds and also has its own share of dilemmas, struggles and setbacks. After the initial dust of euphoria has settled there are a few confessions I need to make based on the experiences I have personally had.

1. I try my best to schedule each day and make sure I have set aside time slots for my in house work and for the one outside. But no matter what I do I have seen to my dismay that the moment I have finished my cooking, cleaning and laundry and am ready to earn some greens, some or the other unexpected and unavoidable task suddenly jumps out of the Pandora’s box and I have no choice but to attend to it since I’m at home…right there and available to do it! So although I felt initially that working from home would be comfortable and convenient, I end up FEELING TORN APART between the work I’m supposed to submit and the never ending domestic chores that eternally lurk around and which I am expected to do.

2. For commuting in my city successfully, apart from transport you need to have high levels of patience, tolerance and energy, to endure the traffic situation, the perfectly potholed roads and the out of the world driving sense majority of the people possess. And so for obvious reasons, the thought of commuting to an office every single day was unnerving. But I realise now that maybe I would have only had to spend that initial amount of energy in travelling and would make up for the loss sitting for almost the whole day in a quiet air conditioned cubicle whereas at home I never stop commuting from my imaginary stuffy cubicle to the kitchen, living room, front door bedroom and back (with more or less similar obstacles as on the road) and I also get EXHAUSTED WORKING, DESPITE BEING AT HOME in the bargain than I would have if I went to work in an office.

working at home- Parenting resources by ZenParent

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3. I have a limited attention span and I believe very structured working environments tend to stifle my comfort levels and functionality. I thought I had that issue resolved when I chose to work from home. I could take a break whenever I wanted, have a bite, take a nap, etc. But eventually I have come to realise that it is not breaks I get from work. I TOO GET INTERRUPTED! The moment I sit down to work, the phone has to ring, there has to be someone at the door, the maid forgets what she has to do next or my kids are hungry and don’t like the snacks I’ve prepared for them. Where is the time to eat, sleep or even stretch a little I wonder?

4. My job requires concentration and focus. (All jobs do) but God made humans in a way that they can focus on only one job at a time if they want to do it very effectively. (No offense to multitaskers…I try to be one too) And when I try to do the intricate balancing& juggling act at home I realise that no matter how well I try to manage, I land up COMPROMISING ON THE QUALITY OF MY WORK PERFORMANCE many a times for all or either one of the jobs (home and outside) And NEVER FEEL SATISFIED at the end of the day. And although I would never prefer to do an over time in office I do it most of the times at home to cover up. And I hate to mention the slimy nature of electricity in my city that always slips out of sight and adds more fuel to my struggling flame of work.

work at home moms and their experience- Parenting resources by ZenParent

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Sigh!!!

But hang on. Isn’t there a famous saying- ‘Grass is always greener on the other side of the fence?’ Maybe there is some truth to it for I strongly feel that although most of the things appear rosy now from my angle of perception for the other side, I may have had to face challenges there too and the biggest of them would be the inability to be around my kids when they would need me the most sometimes. So I guess, we shall have to leave the ambiguity in this situation open for individual review and let each one decide what works best for them and keep learning the best ways out.

Read more to see how a work at home mom spends her day by clicking here…

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