I have been very guilty lately. After 7 long years of not working and only nurturing, I had decided that I will work from home so I can be around my son. I tried my hand at commercial baking and didn’t enjoy it as much. I switched to handling social media content as a freelancer. The work gives me a lot of flexibility and leaves me with enough room for my blog. Sharing my life experiences is what sustains my soul. At the same time, the blog takes a lot from me. I need to attend events for ideas, do shoots and be on the go. I feel guilty about not baking enough, cooking enough, keeping the house beautiful, keeping my accounts updated, the list is endless. On top of that as much as I try, the ‘you-don’t-spend-enough-time-
When I watched this video of the PepsiCo CEO (link at the end of the article), it made so much sense. Basically “we are screwed” unless we do something consciously about it.
1) The biggest challenge is accepting as Indra Nooyi says, “you can’t have it all”. My house is going to be messy and on most days there will be simple dal, roti and sabzi for dinner. It’s not a mark of me as a person.
2) Giving space to my son also means that he’s getting enough time to develop his thoughts and ideas. And as long as the additional time is not being spent on the iPad or gaming it’s ok to get bored. Actually, “getting bored” is critical.
3) My interactions, coffee with like-minded and not-so-like-minded people, helps me evolve. And that’s good for my soul too.
4) There will always be some people (even with best of intentions) who will make mothers feel guilty. Some you can avoid so just cut that negativity out but some you can’t. Just learning to keep those conversations short is helping me.
5) I have realised taking on everything myself will not work. The “Supermom” tag is not fair. Seeking support from family and friends is important. I’m lucky that my father pitches in every weekend with my son’s homework. I used to feel guilty about that too but why should I be? There can be many ways for my son to bond with his grandfather and this can be one as long as my father doesn’t feel burdened. And I know for a fact that he loves teaching Kabir.
6) However cliched it might sound but practicing gratitude does help in calming me down. I’m thankful that I’m shaping up a beautiful human, I’m grateful to have friends and family who support me and that I can bake brownies whenever my son craves for them.
7) I have started taking my son, at times, for some of the activities I do as that’s the only way he would understand my absence. If I go on a short 5 km run, I ask him to bike along. I recently took him to the CrossFit box I go to, and apart from seeing me workout (and being impressed at the same time), he had a lot of fun trying out different stuff.
We need to be kind to ourselves and as the younger gen says it “nuff said”.