Living the Dream

I caught this shot of my youngest child, Daisy May, one late afternoon last week. She wanted to set out a bowl of food for the scrappy neighborhood cat, Elvis. Something cracked her up, and I snapped a photo. It was nothing momentous or especially memorable – just an ordinary moment.

Except that for me, witnessing an ordinary moments like this is extraordinary. A year ago, I would have been on the news desk during the afternoon and dinner hours. Now, I am home for dinner every night. And several days a week, I’m home right after the school bus arrives.

I read an article on yesterday about the COO of Facebook, Sheryl Sandberg, who “came out of the closet” a couple of years ago about the fact that she leaves work at 5:30 every day to be with her family. I have three words -GOOD FOR HER!

I hate that it has become almost shameful for employees to admit they have found a way to keep their family in focus while advancing their careers. I applaud Sandberg for going public with her schedule, and I have no doubt she is even more determined to kick butt at her job knowing that she has a firm 5:30 deadline each night. I hope her “admission” will help promote a healthier attitude toward work and life in our society.

I am incredibly aware of how fortunate I am to have a job (at Riley Children’s Foundation) that works so beautifully with my family needs. I am filled with gratitude, and also with motivation to be incredibly productive during my office hours.

And during the “ordinary moments” like watching my kid feed the cat, or cheering at the baseball diamond, or washing spaghetti sauce out of someone’s hair at the end of a long day, I remind myself of this: “I am living my dream.” I have a job I love AND time for my family, and I’ve been searching for this balance for a long, long time. I think it’s time for more of us to “come out” about the ways we have found to make our work, work for our families.

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