Getting Used to the Luxury of Choice

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by Daniella Rabbani, Honest motherhood contributor

In my first piece for Mother Untitled, I mentioned “getting used to the luxury of choice.” Neha asked me to write an article about it.

It usually takes me about 10 minutes to reply with these articles. Given the opportunity to muse on motherhood, I pour my thoughts into writing with no holding back. But this one feels different. I feel more self conscious than ever because what I’m talking about here is…

Privilege.

Owning my privilege is something I’m always coming to terms with. Talking about it publically isn’t something I’m used to. Ask me to write about  my feelings or the internal landscape of toddlers + you literally can’t shut me up. But this feels vulnerable. 

I think what I meant by my statement months ago is that I feel very lucky to have the choice to go back to work or to stay at home with my son.  Not everyone has that luxury. And I know that. Not everyone has the choice between daycares/daycare vs. nanny/au pair/my mom/an artist who babysits on the side/no one at all to pitch in cuz I just wanna do it myself. 

I was 8 months postpartum standing across from the woman who would later offer me my first recurring role on a hit CBS show. I was exhausted, anxious and more in love than I’d ever been with my baby and husband. I felt stretched thin. And I asked, “did you feel guilty going back to work?”.  Her response was short and sweet: “Honey, I didn’t have a choice.”

I learned then to stop asking that question. 

I see the ability/time/freedom/support to question my choices as a mother as a gift. My mom didn’t have it. Hers certainly didn’t. And neither do millions of mothers around the world. 

So I’m getting used to that reality.

I hope that I can use my privilege well. Help others. Be of service. Embarrassingly, I don’t always know what that might look like. 

If you know of or are affiliated with organizations that support other mothers that I (and the Mother Untitled community) should know about, would you let us know in the comments below? Thank you in advance.

How does privilege resonate with you? What does the luxury of choice mean in your world?

Daniella Rabbani is a Brooklyn based actress and the honest motherhood contributor to the MU community. Her full time gig is mama to Ness. 

Photo by Sai De Silva on Unsplash