Toddler In Tow, A Revisit
Wednesday April 3, 2019
Just over a year ago, I put together some thoughts on the working mama juggle when Charlotte was 20 months old. Rereading it, I’m glad to say that most of my words still ring true, that the dance is still being learned with all its missteps and victories. I see her little self in those pictures and can’t believe how much she’s grown, but also find comfort in how much has stayed the same. She’s now pedaling her own tricycle, eating her own ice cream, but we’re still running around the park, conversing about trees and colors (albeit more cohesively).
We all know there is no set way to do this working mama life. Various circumstances guide unique choices for every family, but two things I’ve found to be most helpful in this season for me are flexibility and intuition. When Charlotte approached 2 1/2 last November, I felt a nudging that I needed to be a bit more physically present because it wasn’t her school’s job to parent; she’s always been a sensitive, incredibly sweet and strong-willed girl so it was important to me that I was walking her through the intensity of all the new emotions as she learned them. We switched to my being in the studio for 3 days and at home with her for 2, rather than the 4-day daycare schedule we had before. The timing worked out well as Dot slowly came back to the studio from maternity leave, and as partners, we gave each other the room to figure out the best way to balance one another’s needs.
Because Dot & I choose to run a business alongside being mothers, this means that work and life will constantly be in fluid motion - that we'll have highly efficient bursts of work in the evening or during their naps. That my thoughts about dinner prep and gym class will be interlaced with brand growth and product releases. That every opportunity will be gauged in relation to our families - how can we navigate this with our kids? As two highly motivated, adventurous women with supportive husbands, these affirmative choices seem to be the easier ones to make. Yes, let’s figure out a way to exhibit at a trade show in Japan. The harder ones, for me, are choosing to say no. No because my husband deserves my presence and my daughter the kiss before bed; no because rest needs to be had and the hustle can be a tiring facade.
Holding two things you love will often feel like a stumble, the weight of one repositioning itself against the weight of the other. My hope is that we, alongside those of us who have the blessing of running a creative company, are making a way for it to be done well.
to mothering, to working,