I can’t express how much I hate that cliché phrase. If I read another article about a celebrity mom who balances an amazing career with the perfect family, all while giving cooking/housekeeping tips, I am going to dig my eyes out with a rusty spoon. (Wait, I guess I can express it.) Maybe you can “have it all” if you don’t include such concepts as sleep, a clean house, and a healthy relationship with coffee.
Maybe my cynicism is due to my 16 month old having all her teeth come in at once and having learned to yell “mommy” when she needs me…repeatedly…all night long. Today I am a zombie; and I am pretty sure that is apple sauce in my hair.
Being a working mom is hard. Anyone that tells you different is lying. Not that I would have it any other way. I never really entertained the idea that I would give up my career. I am on Mythbusters, for Pete’s sake! I would love to stay at home with my Stella Ruby. After all, she is the most beautiful baby ever born. I love her so much I could bring myself to tears just thinking about her. Though hard, this is the most amazing adventure.
I do have dark moments of working-mom guilt, but I actively try to crush them with my list. I am a list person. Here is my list of working mom affirmations:
- My daughter has a positive role model of a career woman. She can be anyone she wants to be.
- I never take a moment with her for granted. She has my full attention and I savour my time with her like dark chocolate.
- She has a college fund and she is only 1.
- I am the first one she sees in the morning and the one who kisses her goodnight.
- My mom worked and I turned out fine, right?
And if those don’t work, I just say “Thank you, age of technology!” What did mommies do before iphones, Skype, web cameras, texting and cell phones? My daughter and I connect digitally all day. Even my co-workers love watching videos of her that I shove in front of them — or they love me enough to pretend.
So far, she seems like a well-adjusted, outgoing, happy child. I guess I haven’t screwed her up yet.
Kari Byron is a born tinkerer and explorer. By the age of 5, she was experimenting on her sister and using dolls as crash test dummies. Luckily for her parents, they always caught her right before her little sister took a ride down a laundry chute or was the subject of an "around-the-world" attempt on the playground swings. Kari began her career as a sculptor and painter before finding her dream jobs on MythBusters and Head Rush, where she gets to explore and experiment to her heart’s content. Kari lives in the San Francisco Bay Area with her husband and daughter.