I’m late to this piece by Lydia Kiesling in The New York Times, but I loved it so much I had to share it. Kiesling openly admits that one of the greatest benefits of working, for her and other mothers, is to “forestall the possibility of spending all day, every day with our children.”
Her essay (and the gorgeous accompanying photos) struck a nerve, as I, like Kiesling, am one of those working moms who loves working and feels both supremely lucky to be able to access childcare and supremely guilty that I don’t really want my kids around 24-7. As Kiesling notes, we’re made to feel “that voluntarily putting your kids in someone else’s care is a moral failing” and that it somehow makes us less suited for motherhood. I’m always so grateful, then, when pieces like hers come along, which validate the choices of happily working moms (who are fortunate enough to have good childcare options available, of course).
One more quote that I can’t resist sharing: “So many moments of their childhood are already gone and lost to memory, and I’ve mostly made peace with the fact that I don’t get to retain them all. I’m working on making peace with something else, too: that being the mother I want to be means being away from them for many of those long hours and those short, swiftly fleeting days.” Yes!