I don't know how she does it, but I am trying!

Last night I went to see I Don't Know How She Does It, the movie based on Allison Pearson's book, starring Sarah Jessica Parker. It is the story of a Boston-based financial executive who tries to juggle a huge deal at work, her two adorable children (with all the birthday pinatas and the snowmen that come with), and her neglected relationship with her husband, whilst staying just groomed enough so as not to make her junior analyst be sick.... To say this movie struck a chord in me is perhaps the biggest understatement of this blog so far.

I had read the novel years ago when I was an analyst working for a mom-of-two and I never felt so sorry for her as during that week, even though she was working me hard, everyday from 06:00 to 00:00... So when I had Monsieur Baby and prepared my return to work, I remembered this novel poignantly and braced myself to be missing a few firsts: the first word, the first step... and to leave Monsieur Baby more often than not to fly off for some business meeting.

I didn't want to watch the movie, because I knew it would make me question my choices, wonder whether I was giving too much up in the sake of having a fulfilling career and giving my family nice things. But when one of my Christine Hill friends suggested we go at the end of what have been two very tough weeks work-wise, I couldn't pass on a chance for a girls night out.

So I watched, and every minute felt familiar, the slight unease that grips at me when I come across the perfect stay-at-home moms, the gnawing feeling at the bottom of my stomach when I kiss my baby goodbye before heading off for a business trip, or the guilt when I'm stuck in the office until after his bedtime... and the endless lists!

But then I remembered that women are the best jugglers there are, and if you're a natural multitasker, need little sleep, and are prepared to work as a team with your partner, a nanny, a couple of music teachers, swimming schools etc, you'll be ok, and, to paraphrase the movie, sometimes ok is alright. At home, we make it work: I have a wonderful nanny who adores Monsieur Baby, Hubby Dearest is the best dad there is and he is there for bedtime when I'm not, and I know that as soon as I'm with him we have the best time together. The moment things change will be time for me to reconsider, however right now everyone is alright.

But yes, I did weep when the little boy's first words were "Bye bye mamma",...

I Don't Know How She Does It


Anonymous said...

I want to be like you when I grow up (even though I'm grown up already :-)) You are living my dream.
Keep doing what you are doing- you are an inspiration.


LittleS said...

Dear Bee, thank you so much for such a kind comment, I don't think I deserve such a compliment but it definitely makes me want to carry on! S