Friday, May 8, 2009

Grad School and Mommy Guilt

It amazes me how much I can do. I'm a mother in graduate school who owns a small business. Those three things compete for my time and energy. Right now school has to take top billing because it's the end of the semester and I have finals and papers due. For this, I feel guilty. My daughter should be the top priority, and of course she is, but my time is spent writing research papers and studying for tests, not taking her for walks or playing games.

I hate that, and it makes me wonder if I've made the right choice going back to school.In the long run, it will be very, very good for my family. But right now, I am putting two years of my life, of her life, into classwork. I am focusing on the outcome and my future earnings potential. What about today?

It will be worse this summer when I go to summer school. I am taking two classes in a short, five week, semester, which I know is insanity, but if I have to go down to the bay area for several days, I might as well take two classes and get it over with. I'll be gone all week, only home on the weekends, and even then I'll more than likely need to lock myself in my room to read textbooks.

And now to make it more interesting, I'v lost my childcare. We had an amazing respite worker, a young woman full of energy and creativity that Queen Teen bonded with and started to call "friend." She moved, so now we're without child care and Queen Teen lost her friend. She's sad and I'm stressed. Will I find anyone before summer semester starts? And how will Rick and Queen Teen get along when I'm gone all week?

My business is the lowest priority, which is unfortunate, especially since I launched a book and now have zero time to market it. I throw receipts into a folder, respond to emails and phone calls half-heartedly, and haven't updated my inventory since January. Pretty ironic when I just wrote a book about how important it is to manage your publishing company like a business. Yeah, yeah... I'll do that later.

My own writing? Forget it. If I'm not reading a text book I'm spending time with my girl. Something had to go and it couldn't be sleep.

Queen Teen just rolls with it. On Tuesdays I put her on the bus and wave goodbye because I won't see her until the next day. At first she was sad, now she just waves back and tells me "see you tomorrow." When she gets off the bus Wednesday afternoon she smiles so big her whole body shakes. It only takes a day for me to miss her. I dread this summer.

Why do mothers beat themselves up for being away from their children?

Here I am, "wasting time" blogging. I'd better get off the net and finish my paper. Sorry I've been so out of touch, everyone. I'll read your posts asap. I really do love reading what you write.

1 comment:

jessbcuz said...

I definitely can relate to this post! Mommy guilt has always been lingering, but going back to school definitely brings it out in full force. Grad school just takes sooo much! Hope summer school goes well. I am fortunate they don't offer any classes I can take in the summer, although I will be starting my thesis research these next few months (with my kids running amuck around me no less).