I have worked since I was 14 years old. Yes, 14! I began working in my school’s office during the summer and since then, I have always worked….somewhere. I think that I learned then that work really did take commitment and that I had to be disciplined and focused to wake up every morning and go to a….job. When I think about motherhood, I kind of think of it in the same way. You have to be disciplined and committed. I love being a mom! It is definitely a blessing and I would trade it for nothing. However, I would be lying if I said that it was not challenging at times.
I never knew how my life would change when I got married and had children. How to manage home and still work as I had done for almost 20 years was definitely going to be a challenge. When I gave birth to my son almost three years ago, there were so many dynamics in place and my work life was a bit discombobulated. However, I was able to accomplish a lot and also hold on to my job at the same time. This is mainly because of the commitment that my organization made to providing work/life balance to its employees and especially to moms. Being a Human Resource professional that has been around the term for awhile, it is something that once you have experienced it, never want to go without.
Some may not even know what work/life balance is, but it is described as the ability to prioritize your work life and home life without one suffering over the other. Back when my parents were in the workforce, I do not think that this phrase or notion had even been coined. I am however happy that it was coined at that the organization that I found myself working for . This organization worked with me in every way possible. When my husband moved to another state and while I was waiting/deciding to transition as well, they allowed me to work 4 day work weeks to leave room for travel to his state. When I was dealing with fertility issues they were accommodating and allowed me to get to my appointments that sometimes were as frequent as 3-4 times in a week. When my water broke at 24 weeks and I was placed on bed rest they gave me the option to have my computer in my hospital room and work part time from my hospital bed so that I could save my leave time. Lastly, when my son was born prematurely and was in the NICU they also allowed me to also work part time from his room. It also helped that he was in the same hospital that I worked.
This life changing event was what allowed me to realize the importance of working for an organization that understood the work/life dynamic. They made life easier for myself and so many others that are faced with that dynamic from day to day. I have seen my peers have to make a choice at times between family and work. Work is how we make life easier and enjoyable for our families but it should not supersede the happiness of our families. While the reality is that every organization is where they are to make some type of profit, the organization that cares enough about its employees to accommodate them is the organization worth working for and remaining loyal to.by