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I loved the idea of being a career woman years before I became one. I jumped into this career, ready to give it my all. I had always worked hard, always pushed myself to be better. I threw everything I had into this career when I started first as a single woman and even as a newlywed woman. I signed up for extra jobs or projects. I felt such pride at giving you so much of myself.

But then I became a mother, and I slowly came to the conclusion I couldn’t give you all that I had once given you before. Someone else now needed to be the first priority in my life. Though there are weeks I feel like that long ago ambitious career woman giving a 100% of my best; it is now always short term because someone is sick, someone has a big event at school, someone has an appointment I need to take them to. As soon as I feel like I’m succeeding at giving all of myself to both of you, one of you demands more than I have to give, and the shortchanging one for the other begins again.

Understand I will give you the best of me when I can, but there is someone more important to me that comes before you. I can’t be on and magical every day at my job. Some days I come in riddled with guilt because I’ve barely seen my children the last few days as I’ve put in extra time here, some days I come in exhausted because someone needed me throughout the night, some days I come in distracted because the to do lists here at work and at home overwhelm me and interfere with my focus. I am one woman trying to give both of you the best of me, but unfortunately more times than not that tends to be on different days. It feels like in order to give one of you 100% of myself I must sacrifice the other.

I’m sorry I’m not the employee I use to be, but I’m not sorry I’m a mother or that I put my children first. As you and I move on from this point in my career life we’ll both forget the times I chose my children over you, but my children won’t forget that. But they will remember that I made it to their field day, stayed home and cuddled with them when they didn’t feel well, was there to offer ice cream after their shots. Being their mother is now my number 1 job, and you are second. I hope you can understand that and still appreciate that I do give the best that I can at this time.

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