I had a chat with a loving and dotting grandmother yesterday about her beautiful grandchildren. She was a working mum when her children were young and she is now a loving and dotting grandmother with the privilege of spending quality time with her grandchildren.
She was commenting about how privileged she felt. She enjoyed being able to share those precious moments with her grandchildren and form the special bonding and memories with them… However, during the conversation, she mentioned that her only regret was that she was unable to spend such quality time with her children when they were young because she was a working mother.
This is something I believe many parents will think about often, and with a tinge of the "guilt" feeling. I worked part-time when my children were growing up; I also felt those feelings when dropping them off to the baby-sitter, seeing their faces looking up at you when I waved good bye to them. I know the "GUILT" feeling.
However, this is something I shared with her and would like to share with all working parents:
You are doing your best
Please remember that you are doing your best. You have a family to look after and support, and that was the best choice you made at that time. Believe that you have made the best decisions you can, with the knowledge and resource you have at hand.
It is about quality and not quantity
It is about the quality time you spent with your children. Children remember how they feel and not so much what you did, thus they will remember the fun time you shared together. It can be a fun picnic in the park, sharing a wonderful book together, sharing a simple meal together or just plain chatting and giggling together.
It is about the timing
I believe wholly in timing. There is no right or wrong in whatever you do, it is about what your priority, knowledge and resources you have at that time.
For example, I used to work part-time when my children were young. Was it the best choice then? Was the timing right? I honestly don't know. However, it worked well for everyone at that time, not just financially, but it gave me 15 hours of ME time to delve into something stimulating for my own being while gradually assimilating more time focusing on my children. I had some quality time doing something for myself until such time I was ready to step back fully into my work or full care of my children. But I always paid attention to my children.
To all the parents, carers and grandparents out there, know that you are doing your best based on your knowledge, support and the resources you have at this particular moment.