Today I have a fun treat: a guest post from Revital, a wife and mom living in Israel who blogs at Creative Mommies AND Jewish Journal (I'm already impressed!)
Today, Revital is here to share some thoughts on motherhood, image, and comparison.
If you’re a bit like me, you may find yourself wondering from time to time, “How does she manage? How does she do it?” And then start agonizing, which of course leads you in a bee-line to the freezer and the Ben & Jerry’s ice cream waiting patiently for you…
As we all know and feel, there are soooo many reasons to feel less anything than another young woman our age: she’s so thin (right after giving birth!), her sheitel always looks so perfect, her kids always match and their clothes are always clean, she finds time to pamper herself, she’s so good at balancing career & family…
Today’s topic of discussion, however, is: how does she (a young mother with two/three little ones) manage to balance her pursuit of a higher education/extra courses/degrees? Many women nowadays complete their higher education before having children. But what about those who don’t? Or those who earned their BA before kids and pursue their MA with Moishie in diapers and Suri in pull-ups?
So, after my personal experience pursuing a three-month design course in nearby Tel Aviv, which took up two afternoons and evenings each week, I can confidently tell you that “She didn’t/doesn’t manage!”
My neighbors looked at me, mother of five young boys, in awe and wonder. But it was undeserved. My life and home were a wreck during those three months! Even though I hired a babysitter to take care of the kids and do whatever tidying she could in the meantime (haha!), my children and home (i.e.- laundry, dishes & floors) were unable to bear the lack of an Ima for only two afternoons and evenings a week!
The guilt… oh, the guilt! As any self-respecting Jewish mother would, I felt terribly guilty about the whole ordeal and wondered how good of an investment this course really was. (Now, half a year later, I can confidently tell you that this course did not lead to any new freelance jobs, pay raises… nada!)
So, my conclusion about feeling like you don’t match up your neighbor is that it’s all a bluff. If you’re jealous of her, chances are she’s also jealous of you!
The grass is always greener on the other side.
The main thing is to try to do what you and your husband think is best for your family in the long run, and just let all those thin, fun, put-together, successful, educated neighbors wonder how you manage so nicely! ;)
Love this, Revital! First of all, you had me at FIVE BOYS. Second, I think we all feel this way sometimes--great way to remind us all that we're doing our best, and that everyone's life looks shinier on the outside.
On another note, I'm so excited to have my first piece published on Kveller--a really interesting Jewish parenting/life website. My article is about learning from the Duggar scandal as an Orthodox Jew, and you can heck it out HERE!
Finally, there's another round of Orthodox Women Talk up over at Ruchi's blog! This round is all about Judaism and marriage. Check it out HERE.
And that's it for this week! Hope you are all having a wonderful and happy week:)