It starts from pregnancy yoga, and prenatal classes… it is ingrained in us to team up with other moms, like minded or not… since we are all at the same stage.
So what happens when our stages evolve? Second child, back to work, blended families, working from home? Each group has it’s own silent rules and expectations for participation. Dare you talk about loving your career at a mommy/baby class, or your excitement to return to work? On the other hand, please don’t bring up your children at a business breakfast meeting (in fact, you may want to hide the fact that you have ever had children… what a burden they are!)
In my experimenting and journeying through these stages I have realized it is just fine to say goodbye to one group and hello to another… or do as many moms are doing these days and create your own.
I think the objective of any support system is that it is just that… supportive. For that to happen, you need to surround yourself with like minded moms… moms who embrace the same family values, who follow some of the same “rules of society” that you do….
My feeling is that as busy moms, whether our days are spent at full-time careers, managing our own businesses or managing our families, we have too much on our plate to worry about the lack of support from people around us. Find the catalysts in your life… the ones that light a spark for you, or search for them, if they aren’t yet there. And know, people come in and out of our life, some for a reason, some for a season, some for a lifetime.
It is okay to move along!
I tried very, very hard to be a working mom. I had multiple daycare drop offs each morning and would pick the kids up each evening (after almost 11hrs of childcare) and rush through dinner and bath and bedtime.. then laundry and packing lunches for the next day. After failing that miserably (and dramatically I might add) , I tried very, very hard to be a stay –at-home mom. We had fresh cookies every three days, I spent hours creating exciting and healthy meals, my kids where in developmental programs and my buns where tighter than they had ever been (that’s what happens when you count the days by step or spin)
This too I failed miserably.
For me, the right balance for my family, and myself is this extraordinary mixture of work/life/family balance. Chaos from the outside, I squeeze morsels of work into breathes of space in our family time. I do check my messages frequently (yes, even on “family days”) but don’t always respond right away. My kids still get cookies, but not as often, and yes, sadly… but buns are less firm, but much happier (and my hubby doesn’t seem to mind)!
I see women in this crazy juggle show, trying so hard to fit into the life they are in without the happiness, passion and excitement life is supposed to offer. Just like our bodies aren’t supposed to hurt us, we are actually supposed to enjoy our life.
So, my tips… don’t give up on your dream …. Try and try again… and then keep amending it! Build the island and then fill it with all the like minded people you know…. Create your own version of society!
Then add a little red wine, chocolate and stir and enjoy!
Julie Nowell is a serial entrepreneur, mom of three and can be wildly inappropriate at the most unexpected times! Co-Founder of mom inc MOVEMENT she loves her literal island life, and all the people on it!