Mom Versus Career

Finding the balance between being a competent decision-maker, a desirable spouse, and a kick-ass mom.

Teen Mom: Trash or Truth? September 21, 2011

Filed under: Life,Mommy Dearest — MomVersusCareer @ 10:00 am
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I admit it. I watch Teen Mom. I’m sure the show is not complete reality for these girls, but I do think it provides a platform for discussing sex openly with teenagers. I am not yet to that point with my daughter, but I hope I’ll be able to be open and honest with her when she has questions. I would rather she ask me about sex instead of experimenting first and asking questions later.

I simultaneously admire and sympathize with the young mothers on that show. Raising a child when you’re in a stable relationship is hard enough. I can’t imagine how they are able to manage raising their children, going to school, dealing with parents/ex-boyfriends, and being young single mothers all at the same time.

Tuesday night’s episode was the season finale. It was a tear-jerker. Here’s a brief summary:

1. Farrah decides to move to Florida and is torn between taking her daughter Sophia with her or leaving Sophia with Grandma for two years while Farrah completes her Bachelor’s degree.

2. Amber’s no-contact order with her ex-boyfriend is lifted, but she can’t see him while their daughter Leah is around.

3. Maci and her son Bentley’s father, Ryan, can’t stop fighting and Maci wants to marry her current boyfriend Kyle, but he’s not ready. He makes an excellent point that they are both only 19 years old.

4. Catelyn and her boyfriend Tyler, who made the mature and extremely difficult decision to allow another couple to adopt their daughter, allow Tyler’s dad/Catelyn’s stepdad (same person) Butch to live with them while he is on parole and in rehab. Butch gets arrested again and Catelyn and Tyler decide it would be too emotional if their daughter and her adoptive parents attended the couple’s high school graduation ceremony.

Each of the young women featured face extremely difficult, potentially volatile, emotional situations and decisions. I don’t envy them.

The young women featured in this episode are strong, ambitious, scared and doing their best to be good mothers. Some of them have the support of their families while others are forced to forge their own paths as parents and adults. I admire their courage and tenacity. Regardless of their individual situations, each of the young women featured in this show keep pushing themselves to be better mothers, better people.

I know some people think the show makes the lives of these women look glamorous, but I think it provides a glimpse into their lives and some of the realities they face as young mothers. They don’t always make the best the choices, but they are trying, as all mothers do, to do their best.

I have seen first-hand the difficulties teen moms face, but I have also seen them persevere and overcome insurmountable obstacles to become strong, independent women who fiercely love their children. I doubt any of the teen moms featured on the show will read this post, but I hope they realize just how strong they are and that they have so much to look forward to. It’s hard work, but it’s worth it. I sincerely wish them well.

Do you watch Teen Mom? What do you think about this show? Why?

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Family First September 20, 2011

About two weeks ago, I posted this on my Facebook/Twitter accounts:

“Never second-guess yourself when it comes to making your family your first priority.”

I decided to literally and figuratively take a step back. I gave up my title in favor of putting my family first and doing more of what I enjoy doing at work: writing and editing. This was not an easy decision and it was completely contrary to my second post (“There’s Gotta Be Somethin’ More”).

No, it’s not the ideal solution, but it’s the best option given my current situation. Will it be a difficult transition? Likely. Will it cause my peers to view me in a different light? Also, likely. Do I care what they think? Not as much as I care about my family and doing what’s right for us.

For a long time I was struggling with trying to be a Super Mom: the one who can do it all and still has time to make a home-cooked meal every night of the week. Yeah, she doesn’t exist; at least not in my world. I have nothing but complete respect and admiration for those mothers who can do the things I want to do. Please share your secrets with me!

Someone asked me: “Who says you have to pursue your career while your daughter is still young? She’ll be in school for 12 more years. You’ll likely be working for at least another 20 years after she graduates from high school. Plenty of time to pursue your career.”

That may sound like a cop-out to some, but no one had ever presented me with that option. You would think I would have come to that conclusion on my own since my mom did that very thing. But I couldn’t see past my desire to succeed as a career professional, a great mom and an amazing wife.

I don’t need to sacrifice any of those roles, but I need to put them in perspective and assign them appropriate priority. So I did.

This decision did not come easily. I weighed the pros and cons in my life as well as the effect it would have on my team. Overall, I think the solution presented will provide all of us with greater flexibility and a chance to truly work as a team. At least, that is my hope.

A weight has been lifted from my shoulders. I look forward to doing more of what I love and to fostering better relationships with my family and my coworkers. It’s a new day. 🙂

 

Fork in the Road July 16, 2011

Filed under: Uncategorized — MomVersusCareer @ 6:03 pm
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Being a mom and a wife with a demanding career in communications requires discipline, patience, and a sense of humor. That’s the easy part. The hard part is balancing the demands of each of the roles I currently fill while keeping my sanity and my figure, or what’s left of both.

Recently, I arrived at a fork in the road in regard to balancing these roles. My job is stressful and demands much of my attention and the use of most of my brain cells. Though I have only one child, I often feel regret for not being a stay-at-home mom. I am usually so drained by the end of the work day that I often choose watching TV over going outside, playing with Barbie dolls, or reading to my daughter, Lia. I feel like I’m cheating Lia out of the mom she deserves because I work a high-stress job. Add to that the stress of my husband working full-time and going to school full-time and you have the perfect combination of stress, guilt, frustration, and envy of my husband’s continuing education. Don’t get me wrong. I am fully supportive of my husband’s decision to pursue a degree, but I do envy the opportunity.

To add to the chaos, I am also finally starting to pursue my dream of being a writer. Why now? I’ve put it off long enough. This blog is the first step in pursuing my dream. It will also serve as a means of reflection and therapy to help me find balance in my daily life as a mom, a wife and a career woman. I am certain I’m not the only woman struggling with being the best she can be in all areas of her life. My only hope for this blog is to gain some clarity in my own life. If my journey helps others, then I’ll know I’ve done something right.

 

 
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