I just came back from a five month maternity leave. There’s always the old cliché that girls have to do everything together. In grade school we had sleepovers and 20 of us slept all night in one room together. Then in high school and college, girls always hit the restroom in pairs, “Come to the bathroom with me?” Mostly it was so we could talk smack in private, but that’s neither here nor there.
A friend of mine was pregnant with her first baby around the same time I was expecting my second child. We have tons in common and are great friends. We’re equally motivated, ambitious, have a strong work ethic, and both hold management positions within our respective workplaces. (Don’t mean to pat myself on the back!) She gave birth to her little boy three weeks before I had Cole.
As fast as a baby tires of “tummy time” (that’s “very quick” for non-parents) our grown-up play date was over and my friend went back to work. Two weeks later, she resigned her very well paying marketing position. She’d decided that she wanted to stay at home full time with her son.
I envied her independence to declare an alternate life route. A choice, according to BusinessWeek, many women are making. I envied her for all the experiences she would share with her son that I would miss with my son and daughter when I went back to work. However, it never entered my mind to resign my post at Voce.
Don’t worry; this is isn’t the part where I do a song and dance with my top hat and cane about how great a place Voce is to work. If you work at Voce, I don’t have to explain. The point is this: when did all of us girls become so independent? How is it that two like-minded women made such different choices at a similar point in their lives?
As women of my generation climb life’s ladder rungs, there seem to be so many new choices. Growing up, many of us had stay-at-home moms. (Known as housewives then – Doesn’t that sound something like house arrest? Weren’t they allowed out of the house?). As an adolescent girl in the 70s, the career door was just opening and it was still very hard to see into the other room. Now there isn’t anything we women can’t pursue – even full-time motherhood if that’s what we choose.
The ability to happily juggle a career and two kids in about two years (giving new meaning to Chuck Woolery’s old commercial exit two and two) is proof that some companies, like Voce, offer more than lip service when it comes providing employees personal life and work balance. Who knows, maybe if I worked somewhere else I would have resigned too. However, the fact remains; I made my own choice to remain a PR grunt at Voce (spoken affectionately, of course). I also use the Voce bathroom all by myself.
– Tiffany Curci