PERSON first, GIRL later
Growing up if anyone ever questioned what I wanted to become? I would say Chartered Accountant like my father. Later, when I decided to pursue Journalism, every women in my family supported me. I am eternally grateful to my parents that they didn’t raise me like a “girl”. My upbringing was like a person free of her gender then be it sports I played or studies or permission to even hangout with my friends, they were all same as they were for my brother. Only thing expected of us was “whatever we do, we give our best and have integrity.” I was never told that I will be married off after I finish graduation. I was always encouraged to have a career and was told to work hard to achieve my dreams. Not once, was I ever told that my only identity will be that of a wife or a mother. Don’t mistake me, my family is my life. It is every thing for me and it will always be most important part of my being but having said that I am a daughter, wife, mother, friend and a person. Who has her own dreams and aspirations. I am someone who has worked really hard to be where I am in life (for someone from outside it might not seem much but for me its my sweat and blood, literally). Therefore, it is not either/or case for me when it comes to work and family. Love, hard work, passion, perseverance, patience, faith, belief, dreams and gratitude is what makes me and that’s who I am.
I can love my baby and work at the same time
I am ecstatic to start a family, I understand my responsibilities but, no way it means I don’t want to have a life of mine. It is same as expecting your kids to never leave your side just because you brought them up. As a parent, I want to love, pamper, take care and nourish the uniqueness in my child. I would never want my baby boy to give up his dreams because he is obligated to stay by my side. I would want him to choose his life and enjoy it. The relationship of a mother and child should be of love and respect and not of obligation. How I love to spend every second with him, cuddle with him, snuggle him, kiss his little forehead, hands and toes zillion times because my love for him beyond any word can express. But why should my love for him be judged, compared and questioned against my love for working? Why is it even a choice? Why it is not a way of life? Why women must always feel guilty? Why the loved ones always make her feel so? I can go on with the series of WHYs here but the fact remains if we women don’t change no one or nothing will.
In short, me working or not working nothing has to do with what kind of mother I want to be. In fact, if you follow all the researches, they state, if mother is working kid sees both parents as equal and he is raised as a feminist. Not man bashing or man hating or women tantrum taking feminism. But feminism where the rule is simple. Respect all and treat everyone equally. I want my baby to know and respect the process of hard work and not just focus on end result. I want him to see his women colleagues as an equal. I don’t think I am asking too much here.
Women SUPPORT each other, PERIOD!!!
Another reason why am I going on and on about it and what ticks me? It is people and their rhetoric question post baby, which is, “We are sure now you don’t want to go back to work? Or How can you even think of going back to work?” Sad part is, it is mostly women who question that. Well, I have never seen anyone ever question a home maker “Will you be contributing in household expenses now that there is an additional family member? Or how will you teach your kid to respect a working woman in future?” then why is it every one has these questions and assumptions about working women post baby.
We as women have to make a resolution that we will never question another fellow women and her choices. Instead, we should be asking “How can we make it easy for you?” We should tell and reassure new mothers that don’t be anxious. Don’t worry. Life as you know has changed but doesn’t mean your dreams and aspirations have come to an end. You just have one more tiny human to celebrate with. Harder you chase your dreams better you are grooming your kid to chase his or her. Let us respect ourselves first before we expect anyone else to respect us.
Be a working mother and be proud of it… and my dearest mommies … Just don’t forget to breathe.
Mum Mum Ma – Loving Mommyhood 🙂