Last week I received a note from a woman struggling with how to balance her career with motherhood. She asked for my thoughts and also encouraged me to write a post about it here. I was a little hesitant at first, because I’m still figuring it out. But then again, we’re all figuring it out…so why not share what I’ve been learning so far?
It also got me thinking that I want to share more here about all the parts of our lives that make us who we are (not just food) – work, family, relationships, the good and the bad. Basically, all of the topics we talk about on the podcast already. What do you think? Want to see more of that here? Well, if you don’t then sorry, you can skip this post. If you do, get started below!
I never dreamt about my wedding. I never imagined the dress I would wear or the flowers in my bouquet. Choosing between a band or a DJ and who would be my maid of honor never even crossed my mind. I actually “proposed” to my now-husband (D). And by proposed, I mean I said, “Hey, do you want to go get married?” He said yes and a few weeks later, we eloped in Jamaica.
I also never dreamt of being a mom. In fact, up until a few years ago I didn’t want to be one. Being a mom terrified me. It wasn’t because I didn’t love kids. I do. And I wasn’t scared of changing diapers, sleepless nights, or D and I becoming boring parents that no longer saw their friends. I was terrified because I thought having a baby would end my career. “End” might be a little dramatic. But in less-dramatic words, I thought that becoming a mom would not allow me to be as successful as I wanted to be.
But I was wrong.
Since bringing my baby Sid home, I’ve accomplished a lot of my goals…I’ve grown my podcast, gotten a cookbook deal, and moved to a new city (something I’ve been wanting to do for years). None of these things were easy. But they wouldn’t haven’t been easy sans baby, either. I’m really excited about where my career is headed and strangely, even more excited than I was before I became a mom.
So back to the original question – how am I balancing it all? Well, I’m not.
I hate to burst your bubble, but this post isn’t going to give you all the answers. Because I decided to give up on the idea of creating perfect balance in my life. I just don’t think it’s realistic for me. Instead, I’ve been doing my best to try to create tools, practices, and internal pep talks that help me feel happy (one pep talk goes like this, “STOP! BE THANKFUL.”).
I’ve shifted the idea of finding “balance” to finding happiness.
It might look a little unconventional to someone on the outside, and I for sure don’t have the perfect equation of work, family, friends, and self-care. But on the days where I decide to stop trying to be the perfect balance of wife/mom/author/podcast host/friend/daughter/whoever-someone-else wants-me-to-be and just try to be happy…those are the best days. And lately, thanks to giving a big double middle to the “B” word, those days are becoming my norm.
I’m going to share the tricks and tips I’ve created to find this new happiness “balance”. If you’ve got any of your own, I’d love to possibly share them too. Tell me yours in the comments!