I read a post on Jada Pinkett Smith’s facebook page that moved me to tears. Then I heard similar sentiments come from Shonda Rimes. I’ve even heard the gist of the meaning from Oprah Winfrey. Now if you’ve read my blog any length of time, you know I’m not a name dropper just to “name names”. Doesn’t do much for me. However, the names in this instance gave me something critical I’d be wanting … validation.
Validation in the sense of solidarity. In the sense of knowing I’m not alone in this thing. I’m not the only one. What did these ladies say that so inspired me? In essence, they all conveyed that a woman cannot do it all. It’s just not possible. No matter what people say or what lies have been sold, there’s no such thing as achieving the perfect “balance” to make it all work. (Shameless plug: I have an article called Imperfect Balance addressing this very issue with Gospel Today magazine every month at gospeltoday.com – search for LaKeisha Fleming). Jada talks about not being as far in her career because of sacrifices made for her family. Shonda mentions that when she’s flourishing at her career, she’s missing a big moment with her kids. And vice versa. Even Oprah has said, “I always say moms have the toughest job in the world if you’re doing it right.”
I’ve doubted myself. I’ve known I could have made huge career leaps and have missed attractive opportunities, because I didn’t want to miss time away from my boys. I felt like in several instances I had to make a choice – so I did. I chose family. I’m not saying you can’t have family and the career. Both Shonda and Jada have shown how to do so successfully. But what I am saying is you won’t “have it all” both ways. Something’s gotta give. Just make sure it’s the area you want to be giving.
This is part of the reason why I blog. If I bless one other person who feels like I do, who struggles as I have, who’s proud of achieving a victory I’ve attained, or who just wants to be heard, I’m happy.
Thanks ladies. We are all on the same team. And it’s not just me. 😉