closer to the middle

May 14, 2012

As mothers, we do our best to maintain a home and schedules and meet all the needs of our children and still remain even a little bit focused on the things we do outside of being a mother, whether that’s paid work or hobbies. 

I’m a mother that has chosen to work part-time from home. I have some paid writing gigs and I do some speaking and the Serenity Suite at BlogHer. I’m juggling a lot. Whether or not it feels like there’s too much on my plate has less to do with what’s on that plate and more to do with whether or not someone is helping me hold it, so to speak. And what I’m learning is that even finding a paid childcare provider that suits our family’s needs is difficult. 

My parents have shown our family an invaluable amount of support and we’re so incredibly grateful. We are basically totally wearing them out while we do the great nanny search of 2012. The last thing I want to do in the meantime is take advantage of the time my parents are giving us, which is already a lot, so I do my best not to call unless I have to. 

The reality is, if I’m going to do what I love and remain a writing mother, I need help with my kids. I’m not expecting a perfect balance to magically become attainable when that’s the case because I believe motherhood is all about accepting imbalance in a million ways, but still, needing help is needing help. 

For now, my sister (Thank you, Auntie Slushy!) comes on Mondays and my parents help out when I’m under pressure and need to get something done.This is good and so appreciated, but things today are so fast-paced and friends and family are so busy, a mother needs to find other avenues of support in order to not upset the balance within her relationships while trying to find some balance! 

When we’ve had childcare in the past, I was the most peaceful mother I had been in a long time. Having time to write and then go back to face time with my kids was just what I needed to be more of the mother I want to be. It wasn’t easy financially, but I believe it was worth it. I don’t expect a perfect balance, but as I walk the tightrope between family life and work and creativity, the closest I can come to the middle is with help. 

What would have to change—in your life, in people’s attitudes, or in our society—for women to have an easier time managing work-life balance? In what ways have you found support? Has it been difficult to find? Share your answers below and like Smarter Life Better Planet on Facebook to be entered to win a Haier microwave for your family along with an additional microwave to be donated to the Food Bank for New York City!

(Yes, my usual WordPress comments are off but replying in the comment box below is just the same. I’d love to hear what you think!)

This is a sponsored conversation written by me on behalf of Haier. The opinions and text are all mine. Official Contest Rules.

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