Here are the facts: I have four children, none of whom are old enough to drive. Between all of them, they’re in basketball, soccer, the school play, Cub Scouts, Boy Scouts, Girl Scouts, track, religion, band, an art program, and—over the next few months, indoor football and baseball will begin. If I think more about this, I’m sure I can come up with additional activities I forgot to include.
My husband commutes 1 hour and 45 minutes each way to work. We don’t have family in the area. I do have a job, and of course, there’s the cooking, shopping, and housework that I solely take care of.
I’m in no way complaining, since I love my large family and I’m thrilled and feel blessed that all my children have always loved everything they’ve ever tried. (On a side note, they also all love school and we usually make it to the end of every school year with 100% attendance for all four—this year, so far we’re holding strong.)
Yet there’s someone else in the family with an activity—me. As my mileage has been increasing each week, so, of course, is the amount of time I’m devoting to running. It’s becoming more and more of a struggle to balance my training with my family life. On weekends, my husband often has to be in several places at once, and we sometimes need to rely upon friends to help out.
I’m feeling guilt that I’m sure many other moms out there can relate to, and it’s something that bothers me often. Does it bother me so much that I’ll sacrifice my marathon training, and my fitness routine, for?
There is even more guilt in admitting this. However, I feel we’re all better parents if we have a healthy outlet that we can call our own. We set good examples for our children in so many ways.
I’ve intentionally worked from home all these years—passing up and not pursuing many other more profitable and career advancement opportunities, in order to be there for my children. And I am, most of the time. At practices, games, and meets in the weeks and months to come, when they look out at the faces of the parents in the stands and don’t always see me, I hope they’ll understand.