The 1%

99% of the time I rock the working-mom thing with no problems. I love my job. I love the people I work with. My girls are well taken care of. I have a supportive husband who does way more than his fare share.

And while if given the choice, I would alway choose work over staying home, I don’t have the luxury of a choice. I have to work. It is what it is, so I just own it. I always have.

I have no guilt over working.

To be honest, most days I’m so busy with work I don’t have a lot of time to dwell on the fact that I miss my girls.

But then, there’s the 1% of the time. It creeps up on me when I least expect it.

Like the other day.

Reese had her 4 month immunizations. After her appointment, I dropped her off with my inlaws and headed to work like any other day. That evening while she was still happy, she wasn’t her normal self. It took longer than usual to get her to bed. Then, my normally sleeping through the night baby, woke up screaming at 11:30 PM. I went straight to her room, scooped her up and snuggled her in the rocking chair until she calmed down. I ended up sleeping on the couch with her for the rest of the night. Waking up every half hour or so.

The next morning she had a very low-grade fever, a side effect of the shots. I proceeded with my normal morning routine and she seemed back to her normal self. At drop-off I explained to her teacher at daycare about her shots and I walked out the door.

At the office, I had some pretty major deadlines looming so I had my headphones in and Pandora on and I was busy cranking through my to-do list.

Then it happened.

A song came on and it started with a baby cooing, playing. {yes, I’m listening to Christmas music on repeat} My mind immediately stopped. I couldn’t regain my focus. All I could do was think about my sweet girl and wonder how she was doing. Did she need me? My heart ached thinking about her. Did I make the right decision sending her to daycare? Should I have stayed home? Could I have worked from home? I hate questioning myself…I really hate questioning my parenting decisions.

Most days 5:00 rolls around and I’m still in the middle of something…I’ll look up at the clock and realize it’s 10 after and then rush to wrap up whatever I’m working on and get out the door.

But that day? Well, today I think it’s safe to say I was watching the clock at 4:57 ticking down the minutes until I can go scoop up my baby.

I hate days like that.

I hate the 1%.

About the author

Katherine is a full time working mama in Marketing. She’s married to a handsome, hardworking man that she’s known her whole life. Together they balance two demanding careers, a three year old red-headed country girl, a lovey wolf-dog and 12 acres. She blogs through her lunch hour over at Somewhere in the Middle and tweets between meetings at @LilMissRysMama.


  1. Mary Beth says:

    I hate days like that too, because I feel like they make me question our non-choice working situation. Plus – I don’t know about your little one – but occasionally, our daughter -and more and more our son – will say “Momma why do you have to go to work? Can you stay home with me today? We can stay in our PJs and make cookies!” I want to say -Yes yes yes let’s do this! But I can’t. 1%.
    Mary Beth recently posted..Obama Rally in Richmond Virginia – a Photolog {10.25.2012}My Profile
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  2. Shannon says:

    Okay, just your mention of the cooing in a song made me teary-eyed. I can so relate to this. Hugs.
    Shannon recently posted..Unpaid Maternity Leave and Human RightsMy Profile

  3. Erin says:

    I’m right there with you. Most days I’m happy to be a working mom and I’d never make the choice to stay home full-time. But it sure doesn’t mean that I don’t miss my boys like crazy and long for more time with them.

  4. Observacious says:

    So true, so true. Days like that are awful, so I always end them by hugging my kids more tightly than usual.
    Observacious recently posted..Pictures with Santa: My failure as a motherMy Profile
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  5. For us, working isn’t a choice, which maybe makes it worse when I think too hard about focusing on my profession when I wish I was home. At the same time, my work also brings me a great deal of fulfillment – and lets us pay for extras like dance classes. It’s tough…
    Christa the BabbyMama recently posted..Plan of Attack: My Month 2 Maternity Leave StrategyMy Profile
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  6. cr1983 says:

    I can completely relate to this – thank you for your post and candidness. I hate hate hate questioning choices made. Especially when there is a choice to work vs. staying home. I love to work but do not have to. But I love my child. It’s an ongoing struggle that I doubt will ever go away.


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