It’s been more than a little bit quiet on the blog here for the past few months and I apologise! I’ve a whole bunch of posts in drafts but I’ve struggled to find the time to polish them up for you.
I’ve a good reason though – I hope! I got myself a new job there a while ago which I’m just loving. It’s completely changed my lifestyle and my outlook. It’s given my career a whole new lease of life and I’m really excited about that. But it makes blogging hard. (Just joining up the dots for you there!)
The new job has exposed me to something I was fairly sheltered from in the past few years, and that I had naively thought might be on the way out. It’s this idea that I’m a “working mother” rather than just a worker. In a “won’t somebody please think of the children” kind of way. I’ve lost count now of how many people have enquired about “how I manage” with a small child at home.
Of course, it’s a perfectly reasonable question. Because as a family, we do obviously have to juggle and plan around two working parents. Which we do…very well…because we have to, like.
It’s just the number of times I am asked. It’s often enough to know that implicit in the question are two others:
- How can you be a (good) mother and do the job that you do, with the unpredictable hours and the regular travelling?
- Should you be doing the job under said circumstances?
To this, I have a number of responses but first, I’d just like to highlight how such thinking completely diminishes the role and contribution of my husband to both our family unit as a whole, and as a father. The suggestion, however well-meaning or unintentional, that he isn’t more than capable of doing an equal and, may I say excellent, job of being a parent is offensive, sexist and really at this stage now, just plain boring. Apart from anything else, my better half is a superior cook, cleaner and meal planner than me, so I’m sure the people asking the above question might well wonder what I might be bringing to the party at all.
But just to answer “how do I manage?”. For once and for all, like. Here is my response:
- I am present here at work. Doing a good job and loving it. I get here on time. I get the job done. I leave when it’s finished. What happens before I get here and when I walk out the door, is none of your damn business.
- Our child has two parents.
- My male colleagues all have children. How do they manage?
- Don’t project your own issues on me.
- It’s 2016.