Life of a Working Mom

Life of a Working Mom

I’m sitting in the press room for the annual meeting of the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops in Baltimore, Maryland. Hundreds of miles away my five-year-old daughter is lying in her bed, sick with the croup. The last time she had croup we ended up in the emergency room. Somehow I knew this would happen. It always does.

“We’ll be fine,” my husband told me before I left, as I ran down the list of the kids activities, projects due, dinners available and buying/packing schedule for lunches while I was gone.

This is the first time I have traveled in two years. A quick trip–in and out. Part of me was excited about getting back into the ring after all this time. Another part of me–the mom part–was falling apart at the thought of leaving my kids. It is the neverending struggle of a working mom.

And so I sit here, hanging on my husband’s every update, wanting more than anything to be there. I pepper him with questions: Did you sit her in the bathroom with warm steam? Did you call the doctor?

And I pray. I remind God that I’m here because I believe in what I’m doing–reporting on the Church’s business, God’s business.

I call home again. I hear my daughter’s raspy little voice. She tells me she’s O.K. and that her daddy got her movies and some other treats. My husband reassures me that things are fine and that they’ll be heading to the doctor soon. I tell him thanks and ask him to hug her for me.

I hang up and say another prayer. I struggle to keep my brain on the meeting while my heart is at home. Such is the life of a working mom.


About the Author

By day, Susan Hines-Brigger is the managing editor of St. Anthony Messenger. By night, she and her husband, Mark, are the caretakers and social directors for their four kids: Maddie, Alex, Riley, and Kacey.
  • Lindsey Simmons

    I think you perfectly summed up the dilemma that working moms face. Great post that I’m sure all moms who work outside of the home–who love what they do–can relate to!

  • Teri Leek

    Hang in there Susan. I know it’s tough doing what we do and being out of town when you have a sick little one at home makes it 100 times worse. Just remember she knows her mommy loves her and if mommy had a choice she would be at home with her. Everything you say sounds so familiar. The same routine I go through anytime I go out of town for work.

  • June

    I can definitely relate to this post. The juggling of family and career is hard enough when all is well, let alone when family members are sick. Rest assured that your daughter is in good hands.

  • Lisa Hendey

    Susan, thanks for the good work you do, both for your family and for our Church. My prayers are going up for your little one, for your safe travels, and for your peace of mind!

  • Karen Janisch

    Susan, I totally connect with the heart being in one place while the brain is in another. Every mom asks themselves, “Am I where I am supposed to be?” This is especially true when one of their loved ones are ill. I hope your daughter is feeling better soon.