It’s 10:07pm, I’m eating a family size chocolate bar, and I’ve been bursting into tears all evening. I know what you are thinking – but it’s not PMS, it’s mom guilt. Tomorrow I leave for India. The trip (including travel) is 11 days long. This is relatively short for a visit to a country that it takes nearly 24 hours to get to once you count layovers, however, it might as well be a year in the eyes of my seven year old.
I was expecting some tears from Zara – she’s a sensitive girl and is quite attached to me, but I wasn’t really prepared for how it all went down. About 4pm today she started crying. Every few minutes she would give me a hug and just burst into a puddle of tears. We cuddled, we went to get our nails done (distract & divert tactics), and watched some TV, but the whole time the tears kept coming. The tears are hard to deal with, but the questions are even harder; why do you HAVE TO go? Did you have to go for so many days? Why doesn’t dad ever have to travel for work? Do you miss us when you go travel? And then she said …. “When I grow up, I don’t want the same job as you, because I don’t want to leave my kids at home and travel.” Why don’t you just stick a knife through my heart kid?
My daughter has motivated me to make a lot of changes in my life. She’s the reason I started trying to accept my body and be kinder to myself, she’s the reason I listen to Katy Perry and Ariana Grande music, and most importantly; she’s also the reason why I want to be a successful business woman. Before I had Z what I did for a living didn’t really matter to me. Success was something that looked cool from the outside, but I certainly didn’t think I could be part of that club. Then I had her and all of a sudden I wanted to be an example for her. I want Z to grow up knowing that girls can be anything they want to be, and we can do it all while raising a family.
I’m not going to lie and say it didn’t hurt when she said she didn’t want the same type of job as me, but I also understand that it must be really hard as a seven year old to wrap your brain around what I do for a living. Everyone else’s mom’s seems to have “normal” 9-5 jobs, or they stay home, so she doesn’t get entrepreneurship.
Honestly there was a moment today when I felt like cancelling my whole trip. I wanted to show Zara that she was more important to me than any trip, but thankfully my brain beat my heart. I reminded myself that 11 days is just a part of her life – not her whole life. In the grand scheme of life she probably won’t remember this forever, but if I don’t go I might regret it forever. So even though I’ll be carrying a whole lot of mom guilt as part of my “carry-on baggage”, I’m going to go and try to embrace this experience fully. Wish me luck, I still have to say goodbye before leaving for the airport tomorrow!