Kids, Art, My Heart by Amy McNamara

A writer asks: Is it possible to give oneself over to creative endeavors when your most vital creation, your children, requires equal love and attention? I always wanted kids. I remember learning around age 5 or 6 that it was the girls, not the boys, who got to have the babies, and thinking with glee, Suckers! Boys paraded their strengths and immeasurable freedoms around the playground like miniature peacocks. In light of this baby news, I found it... Read More

When Priorities Shift

My son with his grandmother (left) and his great grandmother (right), who lives at home with us Balancing work and family is the top challenge working moms (54 percent) face in 2013, and only 14 percent think they are good at both being a mom and a good employee, reveals a new survey released this week by Working Mother magazine and Chase Card Services. As the report says: “Our respondents are…dedicated to finding a semblance of the... Read More

Multiple Layers of Reality

We wake up every day with a laundry list of things to do—some so ingrained we forget they’re even “things to do,” like brushing our teeth, others literally checked off a scribbled list of reminders, like “pick up fish for dinner.” As parents, our lists are too long to get through on any given day, something we stress about far too much. To be honest, I don’t even want to list our many mutual tasks here because I don’t want to think... Read More

Working Parent Woes, and Why They’re Worth It for Me (Now)

Does “now” mean at this moment, at my son’s age, at my current job? Take your pick. On any given day, at any given moment, I might disagree with myself that being a working parent is “worth it.” But as I said, at present, it is for me. The woes are not surprising or unexpected, and every working parent deals with them: the cost of childcare, the inability to be multiple places at one time, the guilt (for you name it),... Read More

I Need Five More Hours in Every Day (at Least)

A big part of my job for years has been to help those who work for and with me to prioritize, and I pride myself on generally being good at that myself. I don’t often panic (though when I do, watch out!). And I don’t let much phase me. I am good at zooming in to the details and out to the big picture, knowing when to say no, when to just DO something (no more talking, meetings, or thinking!) and when I absolutely must recharge. But no... Read More

Is the Media Unfair to Parents?

As a long-time editor in mainstream print media, I can heartily attest that it’s gotten more and more challenging over the years to sell magazines, to gain readers and advertisers, to hold those readers’ attention. Television shares similar problems, what with people’s diminished (byte-sized) attention spans and the pull of hyper-opinionated broadcasters. Headlines—and magazine covers—that create buzz are hard to come by. In recent weeks,... Read More