Working Moms: Changing the World

We work to change the world for our children. Stories on Working Moms at A Well Crafted Party. Photography by www.mommabearmag.com

That is a bold statement— Changing the World. But, I believe it. I don’t believe it is just working moms that are doing the changing either. I feel like a lot of mothers right now are changing the world for (hopefully) the better. Today is EarthDay—which, I know, is all about recycling and being a better citizen of the planet— and it got me thinking about other ways in which we are bettering our planet.

The moms in this series have been sharing what they want their kids to look back and think of when they look back on life with a working mother. I don’t know that many of the answers are any different that what our mothers, those that worked, might have hoped for us growing up.

We work to change the world for our children. Stories on Working Moms at A Well Crafted Party. Photography by www.mommabearmag.com

 

We are half-way through my series on working mothers. If you’ve missed any of it then you should absolutely check it out. A big thank you to the volunteers that let me ask them a ton of questions and get photos of them. Also a huge thank you to the women that helped make this possible Mary Boyden of Mama Bear Mag took all the photos from the photoshoot and Madeline Roosevelt offered hair and make-up services to those who wanted it. These women are seriously kick-ass with what they are doing in their own worlds at this moment in time:

 

Why do mothers work?

There are about a thousand different reasons why working mothers work. For some people—which I didn’t really encounter as I was getting volunteers for this series but I KNOW exist and have shared their stories with me— they work because they have no other choice. They WISH they could stay home with their child and be the full-time caregiver, but they simply can’t afford it. Some mothers work, even though they wish to stay home with their children during the baby years, because if they didn’t they wouldn’t have a job to come back to once they felt that their caregiving can be shared. And, then, there are some mothers who love work and feel that they are better versions of themselves, and thereby better mothers for their children, when they do work.

Whether it is a dream job or a job that it is out of necessity I feel that todays working mothers are beginning a conversation that will change the future of working mothers for our children. 

 

We work to change the world for our children. Stories on Working Moms at A Well Crafted Party. Photography by www.mommabearmag.com

What legacy are working moms leaving for their children?

There are so many things that I want for my children that me, my mother and certainly my grandmother didn’t have as an option. I’d like for these conversations about working mothers can help normalize the issues that we are all dealing with just a tad more. I want for my kids to have family leave that is PAID for—whether by their companies or the government I don’t know— so they don’t have to go back to work before they are ready. I want the mommy wars to die down a bit so that whether someone chooses to stay home with their children (for financial or child care reasons) or to go to work everyone stops judging these decisions and starts helping out the mommas in their circle. I want mom guilt to stop being about not getting to be in the lives of their children because they are stuck in an office and more about that extra scoop of ice cream that caused way too much energy. You know?

It is going to take a lot more conversations. It is going to take some changes in our government. And it is going to take a whole bunch of women supporting other women to make these things happen.

 

We work to change the world for our children. Stories on Working Moms at A Well Crafted Party. Photography by www.mommabearmag.com

 

Some things other mothers hope for?

I also hope [seeing me work] helps them become more independent and creative. When I grew up, both my parents worked. Having a lot of free time on our own made me and my siblings invent fun for ourselves. We spent hours imagining ourselves as fairies or orphans or alligator wrestlers. We dedicated weeks to turning our play room into a haunted house. We made up songs and ran around outside and skinned our knees and broke windows (though not too often, thankfully). I want my girls to have a similar childhood – one that’s not micromanaged by me.” — Catherine, Writer & Mother of Two

“I really, really hope my son will understand that I work not because I didn’t like being around him- I actually like it quite a bit, certainly way more than I thought I would- but because it’s what’s right for me.  The classic, “It’s not you, it’s me,” bit.  I hope it shows him that you can live the life you want, even if it’s hard, as long as you’re willing to (forgive the pun) work for it.  And I hope he internalizes the lesson that you should not make anyone but yourself the center of your Universe: it’s an unfair amount of pressure to expect someone else to give your life meaning and worth.  That’s not to say that you shouldn’t devote any (or even a lot!) of your time and energy to someone you love, just that you shouldn’t let them take more than is healthy for you to give.” — Jenny, Office Manager & mother of one

“This is an old one, and you hear it a lot.  But I want my children to see that women do not have to walk away from their dreams, goals, and position in the marketplace to become a mother.  Yes, you CAN do and have it all.  But you have to wake up every day with intention.  Clear and focused intention.” — Missy, Radio Host, Regional Sales Director & Mother to Twins

How do you see working mothers of today changing the world? What do you hope for for the mothers of the future?

Happy Earth Day… now, go change your world!

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Jenni is a freelance writer and media assistant based in Portland, OR. A Well Crafted Party is a blog about all the little things to celebrate in life. Follow Jenni or A Well Crafted Party with BlogLovin, RSS feed, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram, or Pinterest.

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Comments

  1. I so love this post. Mothers are changing the world when we show our kids kindness, empathy, independence, drive, compassion, fairness and strength. We show them in our everyday actions, whether we’re at home or at work. Mothers are amazing!!!
    Catherine @ Ten Thousand Hour Mama recently posted…#GetOutside ChallengeMy Profile

  2. This series is so important, and your writing is excellent. I love hearing these voices!

  3. Working mothers are changing the world, one child at a time :). I love my work but also see my working as a very important aspect of motherhood and raising the next generation – showing them how to interact with the world and how to shape it and make it their own. So really, I feel like the full importance and true impact of what we are doing now, won’t necessarily be seen/heard/felt until our children grow up.
    Marlynn @ UrbanBlissLife recently posted…Food Bliss: Shrimp Fettuccine with Vodka Tomato SauceMy Profile

  4. Reply

    I love what Catherine shared about creating a special bond with your siblings. My brother and I have great memories growing up because we made fun things happen for each other with both our parents working full time. I also agree that there is totally a self management peice that you learn with working parents. I cooked dinner some nights, we cleaned, we stayed on top of our homework. I get comments at work all the time about my self management skills, and I really believe I picked that up from growing up the way I did. I am sure there are moments where my mom wanted to stay home, but she’s always enjoyed working and being able to contribute. I think working moms are absolutely fantastic and I do agree that I hope there can be more understanding that moms are just moms and that each one is different. Thanks for sharing, Jenny. This just made me really appreciate my mom a little bit more.
    Warren @ Blog to Taste recently posted…Cheesy Corn Queso Dip RecipeMy Profile

    • Pech
    • April 25, 2016
    Reply

    I would love to see in the near future even more of a partnership of parents in raising children so that mother’s feel less guilty about not being always home and just like men, women having a life and career and not seen as main accountable parent is the expected norm. Why should moms feel so guilty and the dads not as much – distribute that evenly!
    Pech recently posted…Renata’s Italian Happy Hour – AperitivoMy Profile

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