Balancing Act

  1. Elise Jones says:

    Thank you for saying this so eloquently. I was in a fog the entire week and had a many boughts of weeping spells at the mention of children (let alone the heart wrenching voicemails I got from my girls while I was at BlogHer). It so hard yet so important to show them that I am living my dream by working. But this morning while we snuggled in bed, I remembered it is oh so important to just be with them too. It’s good to be home.

    • Anonymous says:

       It is so nice to know that I’m not the only one struggling with these issues. Every other woman seems to have it all “together” in public- so it made me feel better to hear women open up and admit that their hearts are as conflicted as mine.

  2. Jean Parks says:

    As I sit here exhausted from blogher11 it hit me, we are now trying to balance the same work/family conflicts that men have grappled with for eons. Yes, it is hard, yes there is guilt but we must continue to stride forward in order to give our families the best lives possible, after all, in the end, isn’t that why we pursue work in social media?

    Thank you for this thought provoking post!

  3. Anonymous says:

    Thank you for writing the story that even those of us who are fortunate enough to have “work from home” jobs still struggle with the balance of being a Mother & living out our career dreams. It is good to know we are not alone in this struggle.

    Though I think it is sometimes hard for children I also think that we can also learn to show them how to balance living out your dream career & having a family. We are the role models & in the end I think (or I want to believe) that by living and working toward our dreams & managing a family can show our children how to live a balanced life.

    Beautiful post Lindsay

    • Anonymous says:

      I agree, but I also worry about my children having a memory of a mom who is at her computer a LOT. I sometimes envy parents (like my husband) who can go away to do their work and save their home exclusively for family time. My children don’t understand right now why mommy “works all the time” and daddy doesn’t…

      • Laura H says:

        Two things I found helped me. I made sure to set aside 2-3 hours in the evening between 6 and 9 to be “present”. I ban all computer & phone activity during that time & then I pick it back up after 9pm or after bedtime depending on the child’s age. Also as they get older it is easier to help them understand the different types of jobs that Mom & Dad does & what ‘chores’ go along with those jobs that must be done. 

        During the day I have posted on my office or refrigerator that “Mommy’s office hours are “x to x” & I think that helped my kids learn that even though I’m home I’m not just ‘playing’ on the computer.

        It is harder for them to understand when they are smaller & younger, but I think you’ll find that there are some things that can help the perception they have. You have to find what works for you, but setting boundaries & expectations helps in the long run I think

        I should note that all of this isn’t to say that I never feel guilt. I do, especially in the summer when my 10 yr old wants me to go to the beach or pool. I just have to try to balance it & say ok I’ll go to beach today, but then Mommy will have to work tonight instead of having fun tonight…then ask him “Is that ok with you”

        • Anonymous says:

          YES. Scheduling time with my kids is definitely what saves me. I now need to come to terms with the fact that it will never be “perfect.” Perfect doesn’t exist. 

  4. Rebeccah Connelly says:

    This one made me cry.  Totally get it. 

  5. Kimberly says:

    These things are true.  Our hearts do hold us back.  Men probably feel they are doing more for their family by working and women feel they are doing more by being present in their kids lives.  But overall I think it is good for kids to have parents who have careers and lives of their own.  It helps children develop into more well rounded and independent adults.  There is such a thing as too much parent-kid time.  I think young adults who find it hard to cope with life when they move out on their own are victims of having over-involved parents.  I grew up with a couple of friends in that situation and they really, really had a hard time adjusting as adults.  I do think it is a good thing you are doing, especially for your daughter.  It seems you have a good balance.

    • Anonymous says:

      It has always been interesting to me that my friends whose moms were SAHMs were adamant about staying at home with their own children, while my friends who had working moms were adamant about continuing to work after they had kids. Bottom line: We really, really love our moms! I just know that in the end, nothing I do careerwise will matter as much as my kids’ opinions of me and my job as their mom.

  6. Okay. I’m reading this at work after the daycare just called to see if my daughter could have some medicine for a headache and now I’m in tears hoping that no one walks by and sees me sobbing at my desk.

    You are so, so right. Some days I feel like I have two people that reside in the same body. The one that wants to be successful and have a career and the one that just wants to be a mother. I have no idea how to balance these two women, but I’m going to keep trying. And I’m thankful that I’m not alone.

    • Anonymous says:

      So am I! These things are important to put out there, and I’m thankful to have a blog that lets me do that. 

  7. Jenna says:

    Very thought-provoking. I am in a spot right now where I quit work to be at home with my daughter. I am getting used to the world of not working or being on my own. This gives me a lot to think about.


    • Anonymous says:

      I’ve been there, too. That’s when I started this blog, actually! And I wasn’t satisfied then, either, because I worried I wasn’t being “productive” enough. GAH. We can’t win! 😉

  8. jbalow says:

    I don’t comment often, but this post definitely got my attention. I have a 9 month old, and have been a “working out of the home” mom for 6 months now. I never knew how difficult it is to balance work and life. I feel like I don’t give enough attention to work, my son, my husband, or myself…let alone other family and friends. It’s like all of a sudden, there isn’t enough of me to go around. When I am with my son though, I definitely give him 100 percent of my time. I hope someday to work part-time, but until that’s possible, I forsee work/life balance being a constant struggle.

    • Anonymous says:

      I am discovering that for women, anyway, it’s a struggle no matter how you cut it. The important thing to know is that you’re not alone. We’re all suffering and we’re all (well, most of us, anyway!) doing the best we can.  🙂

  9. Megan Flowers says:

    I think the reason your hear about women being conflicted is because we are the nurturers to our children. Being away from them makes it near impossible to nurture their needs. I am a SAHM and am so feel so blessed to be able to do so. I was an event planner before I had my son. I did not want to work the late nights or have to worry about urgent calls that could pull me away at a seconds notice. I absolutely miss my work especially the creative side of it. There is definitely a part of me that feels like it is being neglected. My son is 2 now and I feel that his needs are more important right now. Eventually I will return to work but right now these are sacred times for us and I don`t want anything to get in the way of it. Life is too short. 

    • Anonymous says:

      I get that. I’m in a transition period now with mine where they are getting a little bit older and don’t need me around every single second. This will be the first full year that my son and daughter are in school (my son 3 days a week, BUT STILL). I’m able to pursue my own career a little more now, but realizing suddenly that the conflicted feelings will most likely never go away until they are on their own!

  10. Kelley says:

    We just had this discussion in SS yesterday. The dads go to work an compartmentalize everything- they turn “home” off and “work” on. As moms, we are never able to turn the “mom” off. I know dads are dads 24/7, but they are able to quiet that voice of “what are the kids doing/eating/playing?”, whereas it’s just not in our make up I don’t think.

    • Anonymous says:

      Exactly! And in the rare moments that I’m away from my kids and NOT thinking about them in the back of my mind, I immediately feel guilty when I realize what’s happened. *sigh*

  11. Melissa says:

    I think that’s why I’m shying away from pursuing my dream of going back to college to finish my degree. I keep saying I’m going to call the college “this week”, but the week comes and goes and I don’t call. I’m scared. There, that’s the truth. I’m scared that I won’t be able to do it all. I’m scared my bond with my son will suffer. I’m scared I won’t be able to handle having another baby in the midst of it. I’m shaking in my boots over here, and trying to hide it behind a bravado of being so proud of myself for wanting to go back to school.

    The truth is, inside I feel pathetic and inadequate and I wonder every single day if I can handle it. Sigh.

    • Anonymous says:

       Awww, Melissa, I’m sorry. I know the feeling. I struggle with feelings of inadequacy on a daily basis, and I’m betting most other women here do, too.

      If it helps, I believe in you.  🙂

  12. Knewman4 says:

    Very nicely said. I’m feeling the other side of this divide tonight as I wrap up one 3 week vacation with my kids and prepare for another 10 day trip. I haven’t done any work in a month and I’m going stir crazy! But I hear what you are saying and I know I’m a lot lot less ambitious in my job because of my kids. As someone else said, life is short. And just in case it’s long I’ll have plenty of time to write all the books I have in me when my kids are grown!

    • Anonymous says:

      That’s funny, Kathy. People keep asking me when I’m going to write a book and I have absolutely no desire to until both kids are in school 5 days a week.  😀

  13. Tonya says:

    well said.  It’s definitely an ongoing struggle for so many of us…

  14. Chris says:

    Awesome post. I have been reading your blog for a very long time now (Lucinda) and I personally think you are doing a great balancing act job. Not that you needed my permission or anything. Keep up the good work! You are a wonderful role model for your daughters! Oh, and I love the new hair. 🙂

  15. Kelly @ JourneysAndDetours says:

    “what’s holding us back is our hearts.” Oh, so true, Lindsay! Right now I am faced with having to go back to work out of the house full time–something I have not done since my daughter was born and it’s just killing me even though I know working will make me happy. 
    Anyway, I sadly missed BlogHer this year and read some of the live blogs. There was a great one that discussed just this– it was the panel (I think) sponsored by Huffington Post about blogging on your own terms. Worth reading for sure!

  16. love is lost says:

    Thank you!  I have wondered on many occasions whether the woman’s movement was really a good thing.  I love being able to provide for my family, but with 2 kids in high school and the youngest in junior high this year, I think of all that I have missed.  My time with them will change drastically soon, and I think of all the hugs and giggles we missed.  Thank you again for putting all my thoughts out there…

  17. Anonymous says:

    Love this!  No matter what we moms feel like we don’t do a good enough job “balancing” whatever that means.  We always feel the need to be somewhere else.  Day to day we all may feel like our choices fall short, but in the long run you are showing your kids a healthy life full of family while doing work you love.  It is okay if she misses you a little-that is the price we all pay when we are away from our kids to work. But it is work you can be proud of and she will definitely be proud of you for setting such a good example for her.  As far as the book, they will be in school 5 days a week before you know it!

  18. Anonymous says:

    I think I needed to read this as it’s something I’ve been struggling with too. When people ask me how I strike such a good balance, I laugh. Is it even possible?

    • Anonymous says:

      No. I’m not sure it is.  😀 It’s the same with blended families and I think we talked about this on the plane- I’m absolutely certain that anyone who tells you everything is going GREAT in their blended family and there are no issues whatsoever is totally FULL OF IT.  ;D

  19. Liz says:

    I saw you at BlogHer, a few times. I didn’t say anything to you because I’m shy like that, but – maybe I’m crazy and reading into it – I thought I could see the feelings expressed in this post on your face on Sunday morning was you waited in line at Starbucks. Checking your phone, looking fabulous even after partying all night, I could sense you were ready to get home. Excited even. Or maybe you were just wishing for the line to move a little faster because,  “OMG I NEED MY COFFEE!” That’s what I was thinking anyway. 😉

    • Anonymous says:

      Wow, I wish you had said hello! I was standing there thinking about how strange it was that BlogHer had gotten so big that I didn’t know anyone around me.  🙂  But you’re right- On Sunday, I couldn’t get home fast enough!

  20. Shelms says:

    i think when the children are busy, as in school, they don’t notice as much…i work fulltime, but when the boys are in school, they don’t notice my absence, b/c i am home within an hour of them

  21. Amy says:

    I read this post the day you posted it and didn’t comment, but it has been on my mind ever since.  Women will always feel the conflict no matter how our lives and motherhood are structured. That is the challenge WE face.
    But on our children’s side of things – there are pros/cons/challenges no matter how they are raised; with a SAHM, work-outside-the-home mom, part-time working mom, work at home mom, etc.
    As the mom of grown daughters, I want to encourage you with one thought:  Just because something is difficult for our children DOESN’T mean it is BAD for them. In fact sometimes it is actually GOOD for them.

    Give it some thought. It may change your perspective a little when moments happen like Punky’s comment about the summer. It may help not to pierce your heart quite so much.

  22. brachiate…

    amazing stuff thanx. you said it my friend. Dont leave us hanging I want to hear more please. Thanks. tremendous tremendous more please….

  23. […] also inspired me to write a post wondering whether my balancing act between career and family was working (little did I know that this would only get worse in the months to come!) and another […]

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