When Life Happens, Do you Lean in or Hold Back?
I always thought I would be the type of person to keep a regular job confined within the walls of my cubicle. However, life happens (it always does) and from this city, my husband and I are going to be moving to another for work. We did not see the move coming although we have really prayed for an opportunity like this because his work brings him to places. In this new city we will be permanently settled, which means we can finally start out family after a year of being married.
To Lean In or Hold Back?
This move has made us decide that I need to leave my job here and maybe in a few months we can start pushing for the plan to have a baby. I thought about how hard it was for us women who have to choose between career or marriage. Do not get me wrong, I am the “lean in” type of girl but I also want to be a stay at home mother once a child arrives. I was raised by a mother who was with us full-time and loved the fact that in all my growing up memories my mother was always there. We turned out not too shabby, my sister and I. I wish for my child the same. Prior to making this tough decision of letting my day job go, I always thought that we can only make one choice between leaning in and holding back. I did not think I can actually do both!
You Can Both Lean In and Hold Back
I had planned on starting my own freelancing and social media marketing practice in the future but I did not foresee it happening this soon. Yesterday as I talked to my husband about my last month at work he encouraged me to start my own practice and he even said he would set up a home office for me. I did some researching, polished my CV and took some notes last night in excitement of the months to come. I am both anxious and excited for this freelance/mompreneur kind of work because I can take care of my family, our future child and work from the comforts of my home. So by holding back on my day job and choosing to be a freelancer/entrepreneur gives me the best of both worlds because I get to hold back and lean in at the same time.
Women should not confine themselves within the mold that society expects them to follow. At the same time, women should not feel that being a wife and/or a mother hinders their full potential. I have shamefully thought that way– that being a woman restricts the possibilities in my life and hinders me to reach my goals. Perhaps it is more complicated to navigate through the ropes of the balancing act– work or life but women should know that sometimes they do not have to choose, they can be both. With the right frame of mind, courage and resourcefulness you can be your own boss.
About the author
Gail Monique Mallo is a Social Media Manager for a tech startup in Abu Dhabi called Fissionlink. It is a social media marketing company that developed an on-site internet marketing platform that promotes user engagement and viral marketing for brands. She is passionate about tech, social media, writing and everything social science related.