Mom Mode vs Me Mode
Ya know, being a single mom has its ups and has its downs. It is absolutely so hard that I don't know if I'll ever find the words to describe it but all my single moms know what I'm talking about. My kids give me so much joy; my whole life is wrapped around them but I've found in the last 18 months that there are two, very distinct, Veronika's. There's the "Mom Mode" and there's the "Me Mode." And you have to protect both, you have to protect both.
When I'm in "Mom Mode" somehow, no matter how exhausted I am, or how difficult my day has been, I manage to get out of bed every morning at 5:30 am. I pull my hair into a ponytail, get all 5 of my children dressed and ready, then out the door no later than 15 till 7 am. I literally drive in Los Angeles traffic for over 3 hours a day to get kids to school, to practice, and to events. I have dinner cooked, usually, by noon because if I don't it won't be ready in time. I get all the little babies: two, three, and four, in the bath no later than 7 pm and into bed by 8:30 pm. It's not extraordinary what I do, it's necessary, it's my job. Nobody gets brownie points for going to work and doing their job. So, I do my job proudly. I do it with every fiber of my being and it is the great joy of my life to be a mother.
But then I took a step back and I recognize that when I am in "Mom Mode," Veronika is usually a mess! Not emotionally but physically. Some days I'll walk past a mirror and yes, my house is clean, dinners on the stove ready (no later than noon) but I'm wearing tights. Tights that I've had on for the last 26 hours. My hair is in a perpetual ponytail, there's no makeup on my face and my eyebrows look a mess. It's funny to me sometimes and I have to say "Veronika, take care of yourself!" but honestly, there's no time. So, Monday through Friday I focus on being a mom; I'm in my "Mom Mode" for sure. I'm in my Suburban tearing down the 405, going into PTA meetings, baking cookies to drop off at this little one's bake sale, running to that little one's book fair, getting everything on their list and finally, running home to make sure I catch the gardener before mows over my children's favorite toys in the backyard. Then I think, don't go to sleep yet the last bathroom needs scrubbing or I need to pack one more lunch or did you remember to lay out the little one's clothes for tomorrow?
Then, on Friday night, I take my children to their father's house for their weekend visitation and it's "Veronika time". I've started to recognize this dynamic, the two different beings that are housed inside my body. And on Friday night I tend to take a super long shower, almost like I'm rinsing off all of the ""busyness of the week and honey let me tell you I am reborn. Because as exhausted as I am, as much as I want to do nothing but sleep, I understand that these are the moments I have to live the rest of my life. This is my balance.
"Me Mode" mom still calls to check on the kids but she also, flawlessly, has her face painted with FENTY Beauty's newest line, her hair is flawlessly curled and she looks more like a supermodel. I attend red carpets, I go to galas, I go to parties, I meet with friends, I go out for drinks and in-between all of this I might even sweep a floor still wearing my Louboutins before I grab my keys and head back out the door.
On Sunday I unwind, drink wine and I brunch. This is my balance; "Mom Mode" and "Me Mode". I have to live in two different worlds at the same time always remembering to give myself credit, that it's okay to be tired, more importantly, that even when I'm too tired to get up, I will live my life. I'm a weekend warrior, not because I care about partying, not because I can't sit still, it's because this is the structure of my life right now. This is what I have. And this is what works.
So, Monday through Friday it's me, my LuLu Lemons, and an old pair of Nikes getting the job done. Making sure my organic free-range seared chicken is perfectly seasoned and that macaroni and cheese isn't the only thing on the menu. And on the weekend I'll be at Wally's with my legs neatly crossed, wearing cute Chanel flats, going on with my friends about what's going on in our lives. Seek balance, do both, I genuinely believe they'll be time to rest; probably long after I'm dead and gone but until then, every moment of every day is used.