Yesterday was International Women’s Day. A day for honoring all the strong, independent, hard working women of the world. I, being a mother of all girls, love the quote, “Here is to strong women. May we know them, may we be them, may we raise them.”
It was also the day my oldest told me, “Women don’t work.” With which my deer in the headlights look prompted her to elaborate more and she simply stated, “You don’t work Mommy.” And just like that a ton of bricks hit me hard. Heck, we even did a whole pinterest worthy preschool unit on careers which included both women and men! But somewhere between all the cute crafts and millions of books I’d missed something fundamental. I missed showing her that women have a huge part in our working world and although I do not go to “work”, I work in a different way.
How can I explain my work to my four year old when there are days it is something I struggle with myself? I get lost in knowing the “work” I put in school and getting the career I wanted and get caught up instead in the fact that I now clean more bodily fluids then I ever thought humanly possible. (Side note: Potty training is hard work. Someone needs to start a potty trainer service.) How do you explain the concept that you had a career, one you loved dearly, and you found more value in staying home to be with them instead? Yes, being a SAHM is work and it’s undeniably hard, with long hours and a paycheck full of kisses and sticky fingers. But in the eyes of a child I can see where this is a tricky concept for them to understand.
I’ve come to the conclusion that I need to do a better job of pointing out all the career women in the world to my girls. I need my girl’s to see all the possibilities that they as women have! Using terms like “mailperson” just isn’t enough. I need to be conscious of their perception and use it as a teaching tool. I need them to know that they can “work” in many different capacities as a women. No matter the “work” they choose I want them to know that I know their value and will support them fully! Go shatter that glass ceiling baby!
I’ve also learned that I need to build up my own confidence in my “work” and realize that it is okay to just be a mom. It does not make me any less of a person or any less educated because I do not go somewhere to “work”. I need to embrace the positive side to my profession like the fact that there are days I live in leggings and baggy sweatshirts! Or the fact that these moments with them are fleeting. They are growing too fast and before I know it all I will have are the pictures and memories we have built. But I guess that is a whole other post and my middle child is doing the potty dance.
Got a comment or a tip for me to help me as I guide my girls in becoming strong, confident women please leave me a message here!