Work-life balance has been a cultural hot topic ever since technology enabled us to take work home with us. Every night. And every weekend. We’re readily available always and usually expected to be reachable, even when we’re not present. Add a nightshift of blogging on top of a full-time job and a household to run, oh right, and two kids, too–I can barely keep my eyeballs above water. Women are expected to balance work, life, home, friends, the gym, ‘me’ time and also, keep their shit together and appear as if they ‘have it all.’ I have a confession for you guys: I have no idea what ‘having it all’ means. It sounds like a lame term some man made up when he was trying to make women feel better about joining the work force. I have another confession for you: I rarely feel like I’ve got it together. There are some days when I give myself a little slot machine pull (cha-ching/nailed it/boom) because I’m so on top of everything but that’s happened, like, twice since I’ve had kids. Most days I feel like I’m forgetting something (and I probably am).
For those of you that don’t have kids, I’m not trying to scare you as these are things I’ve chosen in my life. I work for an awesome company, I have a blog that I love to write (and that people love to read, hopefully), am lucky enough to have two awesome little guys and have an incredible partner to share this life with. I actually enjoy the chaos. Sometimes work is crazy and my personal life has to take a backseat. Sometimes, I get a really fun, kid-free weekend and come back to a messy house and a bunch of guilt for having fun without my kids. Sometimes, I wonder if I’m doing this parenting thing right. Sometimes, I wonder why I still have a blog. What I’m saying is that there is no perfect equation for balancing it all and that ‘having it all’ is a myth to keep us from being happy. Many days, I do a lot of things and I’m mediocre at them–and that’s ok. Having it all is doing whatever makes sense for you and your life. But it’s also being realistic about the fact that of all the things you embark upon in life will thrive at times and at other times they will suffer. Because that’s life. And life is cyclical. It’s time we took our life back, apply balance where needed and realize that we can’t be amazing at everything that life throws our way. It’s ok to be human and more importantly, it’s ok to ask for help. Having it all is giving up the pressure that we place upon ourselves.
(Also, I get really annoyed that no one writes articles for men about the nuances of ‘having it all.’ Why does everything have to be a coined term for women?! Let us live, dammit.)