Buzzzz…….Buzzzz……  It is 5 a.m., and my alarm clock just buzzes away.  I hit snooze one too many times, and I have that same thought cross my mind as it does every morning.  I wish I could call out of work today……  But, I never do.

I have been working on Wall Street for over 15 years, and something in my nature always keeps me going.

I commonly refer to myself as a “worker bee.”  The worker bee in me has been married for eleven years, waited to have a baby for six years and then went through another three years of trying before our little miracle was conceived.

I pat myself on the back when I tell people I never took a single sick day while pregnant as an example of dedication to my job.

I also continued my typical schedule during the entire pregnancy of going to bed at midnight and waking up at 5 a.m.  How do I do it?  Why do I do it? When will I stay home with my baby? These are the common questions I hear from friends and family at functions, parties and holiday get-togethers.

I tell people I love New York City, the thrill of sales and trading and I couldn’t picture my life any different.  What they don’t know is that I lay in bed many a night or early morning, and I stare at the ceiling contemplating my answers and guilty feelings.  The mama bee has thoughts of panic to sadness to indifference all at once.  What does that say about me?

I have always dedicated my life to my job and career, pushing aside trying to have a baby for years because a child didn’t fit into my busy sales job.  My typical week involved taking clients out to dinner at least twice, and I also traveled once a month to different parts of the country like California and Chicago.

My quote “maybe next year” was the common response I gave when people asked me when we were going to have children.  I like to recall the story of visiting my mom at work, and her coworkers asked if I was the daughter with the new little baby girl.  She responded,

“No, this is my daughter Jeni, she won’t be having kids because she works in New York City.”

She meant no harm by the comment, and she was very proud of my job and the success I had.  However, she jokingly would say she didn’t always see me as the “motherly” type, and I should stick with working and not babies.  I often wondered if she was only half joking with her comments and if she was really serious.  I think it was a little bit of both.

So, here I am with a beautiful and healthy one year old little boy.   He is absolutely amazing, and I do feel like I am in a new and special club.  For years, I heard from people how “your life changes” and “it’s a miracle.”  I have to agree – 110%!

When I leave my suburban NJ house each morning, I often feel tired, as I prepare for my 1 hour and 20 minute commute and 10 hour work day on the trading floor, but I hardly ever feel sad.

Most people ask me if I feel sad, and I honestly do not.  I have work to do after all!  I sit on the bus and plan out my day and dream about all the things I could do if I was home with my son instead of working.  When I walk in the door at night, I play with my son, feed him dinner, and then it is bath and bed time.

I like to think of this as my mama-busy bee part of the day.  I typically sit down to relax around 10 p.m. and fill those last two hours by watching some of my favorite recorded shows.  Of course, there are many things that still need to be done, but I can’t possibly do it all.  There is always tomorrow……

Writing down my thoughts is refreshing, yet, I don’t really have the answers to all the questions I have asked.  What do panic, sadness and indifference all at once really mean?  I think as a working mom these are feelings that will come and go constantly depending on the day, the crisis or the amount of honey that needs to be made.

I am so new to motherhood, and I am trying to balance out the work that needs to be done along with the emotions in my heart.  I often wonder if it will get easier, but a part of me thinks the challenges will only get harder.  Can I really keep up with the commute and long hours if I want more children in life?  I guess only time will tell.

I find it a bit ironic in nature when you look at the caste system that exists within a honey bee colony.  All of the bees within the colony are females that are responsible for feeding, cleaning, nursing and defending the group.  The male drones serve one purpose only and that is to mate with the Queen.  Is that concept that far fetched in real life?!

The Queen does not actually do any work except lay eggs.  Her every need is attended to by the workers.  I think we would all like to be Queen Bee for a day.  But can you ever be a Queen as a mother?

I like to think of myself as a Mama Bee, a bee that is part Queen, part worker and ultimately very busy.  If there was a new category of bees perhaps it would be something like Balancing Bee.  Moms are the key to providing balance in the family, and at the end of the day, we deliver something sweet – a loving and happy family.  Buzzzzzzzzzzzzz…

Do you ever find yourself questioning your decision to be a working mother or a stay at home mother? 

This is an original guest post for World Moms Blog by Jennifer D’Ambrosio in New Jersey, USA. Jennifer is a working-mom on Wall St. and is a fan of World Moms Blog! 

Photo credit to Abeer. This photo has a creative commons attribution license. 

Wall Street Mama (USA)

Wall Street Mama was born and raised in the suburbs of Chicago and moved to NJ when she was a teenager. She fell in love with New York City and set her mind to one thing after college – working on Wall Street. She has spent the last 16 years working on the trading floor at three major banks. As an Institutional Salesperson, she is responsible for helping large corporations and money funds invest their short term cash in the fixed income part of the market. She lives in the suburbs of central NJ with her husband of 11 years, their amazing 21 month old boy and their first baby – a very spoiled Maltese. She has baby #2 on the way and is expecting a little girl in June 2012. She is a full time working mother and struggles with “having it all” while wondering if that is even possible. Wall Street Mama was married at the age of 25 but waited to have children because she felt she was too focused on her career which required a lot of traveling and entertaining. When she was finally ready, she thought she could plan the exact month she was ready to have a child, like everything else she planned in her life. She was shocked and frustrated when things did not go according to her plan. Fast forward four years later, after a miscarriage and several rounds of failed fertility injections, her little miracle was conceived naturally. She never thought in a million years, that she and her husband would be in their late 30’s by the time they had their first child. Since the financial crisis of 2008, she has endured some of the most difficult years of her life. The stress of trying to conceive was combined with some of life’s biggest challenges. She and her husband, who is a trader, both lost their jobs on Wall Street the exact same month. Her mother was diagnosed with terminal cancer and she ended up passing away while she was 6 months pregnant. At times it didn’t seem like things would ever get better, but she has learned that life is cyclical and what comes down must again go up. Leaving her baby boy with a wonderful nanny each day is difficult, but at times it is easier than she would have expected. She still enjoys the seemingly addictive draw of working on Wall Street. The past few years have been dramatically different from the “good days” but she is focused on trying to achieve what she once had before. She is currently working on launching her own blog, Wall Street Mama, in an attempt to guide others who are focused on continuing their career, yet struggle with leaving their little ones at home. She is weathering the ups and downs of the market and motherhood, one day at a time.

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