Working And Mothering -- What Would You Tell Your 22 Year Old Self?

Recently, I was talking to a client, lets call her Anne, about the logistics of going back to work now that she’s a mom.  Anne has a tough job that requires a big time commitment, more-than-occasional evening and weekend hours, and intense focus. It’s a job she loves and is great at. 

It’s also a lot like taking care of a baby when you think of it.  

As we talked, we were partly discussing childcare and time management, but, as we chatted, veering more and more into a conversation about what becoming a mother has meant to Anne, how it’s changed her perspective on what she enjoys and how she wants to spend her time.  Anne was pondering how to blend all that with the woman she’d always been, and the career she has really loved.  This kind of conversation involves issues you can only explore, not the kind you can Solve in Three Simple Steps.

Somehow we got onto a tangent about Anne’s infant daughter.   “My husband said, ‘Maybe when she’s growing up, we’ll encourage her to pick a career that blends better with motherhood,’” Anne told me, and went on, “I was so annoyed!  If someone had said to me when I was in college that I should pick a career that blended well with motherhood I would have been totally disgusted by that.”

"And what about now?" I asked.

"Well … "

There aren’t simple answers to this, are there?  The fact is, it’s very tricky to weave together a pre-baby life and a post-baby life.  What do you think?  Email me your stories about going back to work, what’s worked well and what’s been complicated, and what advice, if any, you’d give your 22 year old self, now that you’re on the other side of this.  I’ll feature the stories here.

meredith (at) amotherisborn (dot) com