It’s another year of homework, runny noses and volunteering at school. This is THE moment where I can drop my kids at school and actually exercise for an hour. I have been waiting for this for years. Yet, just as I think I have a new schedule worked out, I am reeled into the volunteer trap (aka volunteering for too many things). This is partly due to the fact that I want to know what is going on with my kids. I also realize our schools need volunteers and I want to help. Much of the time, I sign up because I just feel guilty.
Let me explain. While attending an annual back-to-school meeting, the Head Super Volunteer must have said, “I know it’s very challenging for us working parents'” a MILLION times. Ok. I recognize that her statement is indeed true. The tone by which she continuously shoved her insight down my throat insinuated that I, Stay-at-Home Parent, could make it easier on Over-Worked parent. Stay-at-Home Parent has it easier.
Why had I chosen that ONE day to show up sans makeup, crisp clothing and a shower? I felt like a blemish in an unusually sparkly crowd. A very crisp crowd. good-looking. Lattes. Income makers. And there I was, presenting myself as the stereotype I despised: Bon Bon Mom. I was particularly sensitive, but my irritation with her words stems from my own observations about a lack of support by FEMALES. Working moms often believe they have it so much harder. Home moms often find a way to think they carry the harder burden. Both groups just want to justify that they are taking the best actions when it comes to their children. That they are doing their part. “Mommy guilt” strikes again. What better target than where the grass seems greener?
Now I’m signed up to volunteer on Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Thursdays…amongst other odds and ends days. When I drop my kids off, I will often walk in behind them to report to duty. Instead of feeling guilty or bitter (well, maybe just a teeny tiny humanly bit), I am going to focus on the fact that I am SO lucky that I get to be so involved with my children and their environments. I will also shower more and purchase some lipstick.