There’s a newsletter I get from Katherine Goldstein, who writes about the issues facing working parents (especially mothers).
In the latest edition, there was a paragraph that struck me with force:
On Friday, I was solo parenting the twins all day. We were all healthy and not yet COVID positive and during their nap time I laser-focused and plowed through finishing an op-ed, hitting my deadline just as I started to hear squeaks on the monitor. I felt proud of “getting it all done” and by the time it was bedtime for the tots I was completely spent – but it was a successful one-day sprint. I then started to think about how so many parents (especially moms) were forced to do this kind of sprint, day after day, month after month, for a year+ with no social support. I feel like the world has already forgotten this, and there is no compensation or reparation for how we’ve kept society going when society doesn’t give a shit about us. I am angry all over again at the government, society, and workplaces who’s message to parents is, “sucks to be you.” I will never, as long as I live, accept that this is OK. Tuning back into this injustice reminds me of why I do what I do. (my emphasis)
I am long past the stage of racing to get things done while the toddler sleeps – but I remember it well. Now that my toddler is 19 and holding down a job, I am able to work at my own pace, make lists in the knowledge I will get things done, plan whole weekends where I will make a quilt or read a book.