In the spirit of Mother’s Day, thought I’d give finishing this blog a try. Usually I don’t get stuck, I know what I want to write and I go about writing just that. But this is a sensitive subject. One that I’ve carefully approached many times.
I’m a career mom, obviously. I fight the urge to snooze every morning so that I can get in some ‘quality’ time with my son before I leave him for the rest of the day. This means letting him hold my phone while I quickly apply my makeup and try to get out the door. I’m usually always late; it’s not the traffic and it’s not the weather either, but it’s because he said ‘blue’ for the first time today, and I just had to hear it again.
As I’m speeding on my way to work, the beaming smile slowly starts to fade. Not that I’m sad to go to work, I love my job, but because I’m steadily going into professional mode. As a working mom you have a split personality, the one that posts annoying Facebook pictures of her son’s every move and the one that will go above and beyond to make sure the new website is absolutely perfect.
So the question remains, can you have a career in PR, or any career for that matter, and be truly successful without putting your life on hold?
I say yes.
I’m every woman
I have friends that career dominates their life (putting child-bearing aside for another year), part time mamas and single friends. Where do I fit in? I’m a full time PR professional by day and SuperMom by night. And yes; it can be done. I personally don’t understand why I would have to choose between one or the other. When I’m in the office, I’m a 100% here. When I’m at home, I’m 100% at home. Of course, there’s the occasional spill over from both sides, but I really feel that neither needs to be sacrificed for the other to work.
Sorry, I’m busy
But all the while, I’m not guilty, I’m not sad; I’m content. Sure a lot of moms give up their careers for their kids, and that’s very commendable, it’s just not for me. My mom was a stay at home, and I don’t think I could have asked for a better childhood, but for me, personally, this is what’s right. You see, I’m not a kid person. Love mine, but hate the others. I think I would go mad hanging out with a two year old all day, but that’s just me. Who’s at home playing with him? My mom, who’s an amazing substitute, my brother who comes home at 3 to jam to music with him and my nanny. With the right support system, we’re changing the convention of how kids are brought up. Stay at home mom, part-time mom or full-blown career mom, it’s not the time that counts, it’s what you do with that time that matters.
Pick a role and make it work
Whichever way you roll, I think it’s important to find out how you feel, where you are in life and how an employer values these very values. I’ve been to interviews where they wanted to know exactly how many children I wanted and when – how can I honestly answer that? There are so many factors involved. I don’t want to be put on a schedule and I don’t want them waiting around with handcuffs the minute I gain a kilo from eating a cheeseburger. My personal life is my personal life and my professional life is my professional life – I even kept my pregnancy secret from a previous employer so that I could help launch a showroom, because I didn’t want preferential treatment, because it was my project. What I’m trying to say is that it shouldn’t be viewed as a handicap.
On my way back home from work, the professionalism starts to fade and I wait in anticipation to get through that door. For what? For that big, huge smile that says, ‘Mommy’s home!’ and the chance to listen to him babble about his day.
That is the highlight of my day. But it wouldn’t be possible if my life were any different. I love my son to death, but I’m a better parent to him thanks to my job.
Mom, is it time to quit?