Mommy Bloggers Sound Off on “Having It All”
A few months back, I reached out to some mothers in the blogosphere for their input about how to strike a balance between working outside of the home, parenting, and blogging. But being the over-scheduled person that I am, I never got around to posting their responses – until now! Given the topic of yesterday’s post, I figured this was the perfect opportunity to do so!
Participants in my completely random, non-scientific virtual mommy roundtable are: Nakia of Vogue & Vintage – a partnered new mother of an infant; Krystal of K-Sea Plus – a single mom of four children, ranging from a toddler to teen; Alison of DC Celine – a married mom of two children under age five (Interesting tidbit – the blog was her husband’s idea!); and Alison of Wardrobe Oxygen – a married mom to a three-year-old daughter. All of these women work outside of their homes in government, business, etc. Check out what they had to say in response to the following questions . . . .
What are some of the biggest challenges you face in managing your family, household, and career?
KRYSTAL: “My biggest challenge is time management. At this point in my career I’m really focus on moving up. This has taken up a great deal of time. I’m now working on a better way to have work/life balance. It’s a constant struggle.”
ALISON (WARDROBE OXYGEN): “Not having enough time at home. I don’t feel as though I know my daughter as well as my husband does (he works part time and stays at home with her during the day). My weekends end up being chock-full of chores around the house and running errands because I don’t have the weekdays to accomplish them. As for my career, I am working towards a promotion, but that means the occasional late night, checking my email at home, and sometimes finishing projects on weekends. It’s really hard when I HAVE to leave at a certain time (my husband teaches two nights a week so I need to leave on time so he can get to work on time). I am very blessed to have my mother just a few miles away and she helps often with watching my daughter, even helping me with a few errands.”
ALISON (DC DELINE): “It’s no surprise, I’m sure, that finding “the balance” is the toughest thing. How do I provide and serve all of those who expect something of me, including myself? If I go get my brows waxed, I’m using time I could be with kids or job(s). If I cook a real dish for my family, which I love to do, then I’m not blogging, which I also love. If I have late meetings, I miss bedtimes, and rarely get to drop off or pick up from school, never mind going to the playground. What ends up happening is that each area of my life takes precedence for a short while, and the others fall off.”
What piece of advice would you offer to another workingi parent about managing family, household, and career?
NAKIA: “Be patience and have a plan but still be realistic and flexible. This is what I am still learning being 6 weeks into being a new parent and on a new road in my life.”
KRYSTAL: “Pray & prioritize. It’s my faith in God that keeps me going when I don’t have enough money or time for my children. I prioritize what’s most important. Going to my daughter’s basketball game may be more important this week verses getting one hour of overtime.”
ALISON (DC CELINE): “Be patient with yourself. It’s the hardest thing to do in the world, and probably the most important. You will not be able to do it all, despite what you think you see others doing. Somewhere, there are ‘sacrifices’ made. Allow yourself the luxury of a breath and stepping back – and not doing everything perfectly, but sometimes just well enough.”
ALISON (WARDROBE OXYGEN): “Your home is a business – let the emotions go and work with your partner or childcare support to do what is best for the family business. My husband and I are constantly texting, emailing and sitting down with one another to ensure we are on the same page, both equally informed, and make decisions together. You often have to let go of your ego and pride and do what is best for the family unit.”
Have you written any blog posts that are relevant to trying to be a fashionable and fabulous working mom?
NAKIA: “No, but I do write a kids fashion blog which touches on the fashion aspects of being a new parent. Its called Precious Couture.”
ALISON (WARDROBE OXYGEN): “Yes – Personal Style – How to Make Time.”
ALISON (DC CELINE): “Here’s one about failing to have style – You didn’t…? Really?“
Anything else you’d like to add on this topic?
NAKIA: “Being a parent for me has been very scary but now as I am coming into it, it’s the best thing I have done so far in my life. Being a parent and mother opens your eyes to what really matters in life. Small thing become just that, small things.”
DC CELINE: “The only things that come to mind are tried-but-true cliches, like believe in yourself, be patient, and wash your face. But they’re true.”
If you are looking for even more discussion of how to be a working mother, check out this great e-book, This Is How We Do It: A Survival Guide For Busy Moms, edited by Tara Pringle Jefferson of The Young Mommy Life. Also, be sure to check out these other great blogs by working moms – SocaMom (a blog by the fabulous Eva about Caribbean-American parenting) and Good Enough Mother by Rene Syler (yes, THE Rene Syler, formerly of CBS News).
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