This blog was written for the Little Ruth book series.
Summer “break” is over. Which should definitely be rebranded as a circus of juggling summer camps, remembering sunscreen, playing Janga with schedules, and trying to, oh, you know, relax and enjoy summer. Let’s not even get started with the logistics of taking PTO and organizing a vacation with kids.
First of all, working mom, you are amazing and so brave. You are role modeling to your child(ren) an adult life that includes a career, paying the bills, taking time for yourself, and bravery. Brave in going for what you want and knowing you will never “have it all,” but CAN have “your all” in a messy and wild way.
The house is a little (ok, maybe a lot) messy, dinner is Cheerios (again), and everyone is watching a movie. You did it. You made it through another day, fed your kids, and relaxed with them. High five!
Below are a few practical working mom back-to-school tips that made me feel more in control and calm. I hope they do the same for you!
Know and use your workplace rights!
In most states, laws protect you from taking time off of work to take you or your child to the doctor and do other parenting tasks. And please, oh please, know and utilize the full extent of family leave rights during pregnancy and postpartum.
Daphne Delvaux, Esq. is a practical and brilliant attorney who drops gems of working mom legal wisdom on Instagram. You can embrace your parenting journey without compromising your career. Do it for yourself (and your health and sanity!) and your ancestors who fiercely fought for anti-discrimination rights. Do it as a role model for other mommas in the workplace and future generations. No one messes with us.
Create a family phone calendar.
If it isn’t on the calendar, it’s not happening. Create a shared calendar with spouses, co-parents, caregivers, nannies, etc. Basketball practice, dentist appointments, school projects, signing up for programs—overshare and SHARE THE LOAD!
Share the load.
Your kids can do their laundry, make lunches, put the dishes away, and feed their younger siblings. It will give them a sense of pride and make them better adults. Divide tasks with your spouse, hire a teenage neighbor to help, and outsource house cleaning and babysitting. It takes a village.
Yelling at traffic and dealing with major meltdowns at the store—only to not find what you are looking for—can be a thing of the past. Order online. School supplies, groceries, shampoo, clothes—save time and money and embrace the luxury of technology. It all can be delivered to your doorstep.
Remove “guilt” and “perfection” from your dictionary.
No one needs to bring life to those words—they are just a couple of liars.
What are your best working mom tips—for going back to school or any time of the year? Please share via a comment on this Instagram post.