Conundrums of a Modern Woman

8 Sep

I could not be happier – at so many levels and in so many aspects of my life.  Does it mean that my life is easy?  Absolutely not.  Just the opposite in fact.  But in reality the challenge of my everyday life is something I find deeply fulfilling.  I’ve been thinking a lot about where I am today – actually, where we are are today – and where we will be 1, 3, 5 years from now.  The answer is that I just don’t know.

We are very happy in our urban DC life.  It’s a rat race of sorts with a career tangled-up in posturing, politics, and power – in no particular order.  But a career, a mission, that I am very passionate about.  Did I mention that I am passionate about my career?  Oh yes I am passionate about my career.  I am very grateful for my career, and it also something I have worked incredibly hard for.  Throwing my entire self – heart, head, and soul – for a good part of the time.  I guess you could say, I’ve been “leaning in” for the past 10 years.  I’m afraid to write down the list of “things I’ve done”  in the past ten years because it is far more than I ever dreamed.  I’ve broken down stereotypes and broken through the taboos and glass ceiling of women in leadership. Most importantly, I know that what I do every day helps to make life better for millions of people.  Being a part of that kind of positive change is what makes me tick.

I think back on the stories that my grandmother shared with me about how she attempted to work outside of the home after her children were all in school.  Her work was a “secret” kept from the family, since it was unheard of and considered unacceptable.  A married woman with children, having a few hours of independence at a job.  I just can’t imagine.  When my grandfather found out, that was the end of that job.  Though he did offer for her to work with him in his business.  Not quite the same, but still considered acceptable.  Now for the record, I am not negative towards my grandfather regarding this in any way.  He was a very loving and involved father and husband, and he and my grandmother lived a great life together.   But in the 1950s and 1960s, it simply was not status quo for a wife and mother from the upper middle class to work outside the home.  I must say, I am forever grateful for my mother, grandmother, and all the generations of women that came before me.  They paved the way for modern women.  From voting rights to equal pay to women in leadership and politics.  We have come a long way, and we still have a much farther to go!

Here I am in 2013 – a passionately loving mother and wife – and a passionate and successful professional woman. And I am torn.  After 10 years of building a successful and satisfying career in the epicenter of World Politics I am questioning how much longer I want to continue down this road.  Six months ago I started writing the next (of many) chapters in our life with Kai, and this has brought forth in my mind so many other things I’d like to do in my life with Kai and Keylor.  But most importantly I’ve come to realize I am passionate about being a mom.  Oh yes I am very passionate about being a mom.  While I am so very grateful that I have the opportunity to do both – be a mom and pursue my career – I’ve come to realize that I really want to spend more time being a mom and less time in my professional career.  It’s a hard reality, especially when you are satisfied in the present moment.  But I dream about all of the other aspects of life – as a mom – that I have yet to fully uncover my passions for…

  • Living Closer to the Earth
    I love gardening and farming.  And for me part of being a mom is also about living close to the earth.  Guiding my children in seeing nature through the birds, bees, worms, and spiders.  Harvesting squash and fresh herbs – and with my children in the kitchen transforming them into dinner’s delight.  Living closer to the earth is at the core of my being – and in my being a mom.
  • Singing & Laughing More
    I spend more time singing now than I have in my whole life.  I sign nursery rhymes and make-up new songs everyday.  But I still need to sing and laugh more.  One thing I learned at Moon Garden that has stayed with me is about the importance of daily rhythms and singing to your babies.  Babies (and children) benefit greatly from the establishment of daily rhythms and through living gentle household rhythms.  Rhythms should not be confused with a schedule.  And further, by passing through those rhythms with song.  I yearn to establish more gentle rhythms and create more song.
  • Nurturing Life
    Our home is filled with life.  Between three cats, 1 dog, and a beautiful baby Kai – there is so much life and love to go around.  And we take in others when the stars align as so.  We are passionate about nurturing life.  And I want to dedicate more hours in my day to nurturing my child(ren) and every aspect of our life together.  This is not new for me and this one comes back to #1 – Living Closer to the Earth.  For me nurturing life also means growing healthy organic vegetables on the farm, raising egg laying ducks, and milk producing goats.  For me it is about teaching our child(ren) how to nurture life by living closer to the earth.
  • Strengthening a Community
    We’ve built a strong sense of community here in the DC area.  I love our friends here and they are like family.  Still I yearn for our child(ren) to grow up in a more tight knit community, one that they feel a sense of responsibility and that the community feels equally responsible for them.  The type of community where young people are empowered to be a part of leadership, where traditional culture coexists with modern, and where everyone is a part of making each others lives fuller.

There you have it, my dream list of some of the “things I still want to do” as a mom to sweet Kai. So much more in life has yet to come. I don’t know exactly when or exactly where this journey will take us but I can tell that it’s likely to take us on a new adventure sometime in the foreseeable future.  And with that – Goodnight.

4 Responses to “Conundrums of a Modern Woman”

  1. Bill September 9, 2013 at 8:32 am #

    Your thought process has been and will continue to be a rewarding passion, guiding you forward.

    • vivevivir September 9, 2013 at 9:30 pm #

      Thanks Dad! Writing also helps bring greater clarity to my thinking and decision making process. The future is unknown but I still need to put more energy into living in the present! 😉

  2. Lauren Glockner Goff September 9, 2013 at 2:17 pm #

    You strike such a wonderful balance! I’ve found recently that while concentrating on “goals” – in areas including but not limited to career, self, and family (no particular order) – it’s in my learned behavior to feel that I can only be working on one thing at once. I used to often feel that if I were working on one goal area, I was neglecting the others. I have learned to see things a different way, but this requires practice for me. That new outlook is basically, if I have full and well meaning intentions toward some goal, I am clearly on my way to achievement. This helps when I feel I have to choose what “best” to do with my time. In my new role as entrepreneur, I feel so blessed to use my time as I know best.
    Thank you for sharing your thoughts, I appreciate reading them!

    • vivevivir September 9, 2013 at 9:29 pm #

      Lauren! Thanks for sharing. I totally know what you mean in terms of focusing in one area and in turn neglecting another. There really only are 24 hours in a day and you have to sleep for 8 of them, eat, shower and that only leaves you with such a short amount of time to dedicate to pursuing your dreams. I find that I am so much more conservative about how I spend my time at work now. I don’t make time for much small talk and I really focus on getting the job done and done right. I am sure as an entrepreneur you also find time efficiency to be so critical. In the end, it’s about doing what you love – whatever that may be! Cheers. 🙂

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