Sunday, November 20, 2011

Mommy's Project 52:17 Leading

Lead, follow, or get out of the way

Yesterday my daughter had the day off of school, but Hot Dad and I had to work.  Naturally, the kids would normally go to day care, not a big deal.  Yesterday, Ethel protested, as she often does, and was pretty definitive about not wanting to go to day care.  What's a working parent to do other than tell their kid to suck it up (which we did all summer)? 

In the spirit of being a good example to, at least one of, my kids, I got the idea to take Ethel to work with me to save the money on day care so she could see where I go every day while she spends her days in school.  I have working mom guilt.  You know that feeling you get when you wake your kids from deep slumber on a cold winter morning, stuff them into their clothes, shove dry cereal into their mouths, then take them out into the elements and drive them to a small building with brightly colored walls and toys and leave them in the hands of others to make sure they are fed and kept warm and learn their ABC's.  OK, so there's a lot more to it, but I'm sure working moms can relate.

Work is a hard concept for kids to grasp.  Heck, it's difficult for some of the 20-somethings and 30-somethings.  Still, I want my kids to see what their parents are doing when we can't be together.  I don't want "Mommy and Daddy's work" to be some black hole, a vague location where Mommy and Daddy are lost for 10 hours a day.  Yesterday was the perfect opportunity, with several people already off for the holiday, Ethel being nearly seven, and the workload being a little slower, allowing me to show her around, and give her an idea of what I do at the office.

She had a great time, which I think is pretty evident from her smile.  She did well, too, keeping herself busy learning how to scan and print from a coworker of mine, seeing how I send faxes, and watching me receive e-mails for hours on end.  There was some tracing, cutting and coloring, along with playing with all the fun toys from Mommy's desk, of course.  And let's not forget the unending fun a few stress balls can provide.

I don't see myself as a leader in many aspects of my life, but I do try to be a good role model to my kids. Don't laugh, those who know me.  :)  Giving my daughter a glimpse of Mommy at work can hopefully give her some idea of what it means when "Mommy goes to work".