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Feminism & Motherhood

I took my sophomore son to a college fair in September. He drove. We fought over parking. He already knows best.

We walked the rows quickly. Hastening to see the next place that might be suitable for the grand escape of 2026.

I struggled to keep pace with his 6’ tall stride.

That’s a metaphor for our lives every day.

I struggle to keep pace with him. How is he not still 10 months old? How does he not need me? How did he just park this giant SUV?

Most days I just observe. I observe how he operates in the world. This is the man I have raised.

He is now preparing for a journey I do not get to take.

In August, this young man was in an accident that could have taken his life. In the days surrounding that event I wrestled with my life choices more than I ever have as a working mother.

I blamed myself for the accident.

Recently I find myself questioning my life (more than usual.) My overtly feminist choice to build a career and a business. My quest to have it all.

For many women, working is not a choice. It is a financial necessity. My situation is somewhere in the middle. With smart planning I could work substantially less. So my drive is personal. It’s feminist.

It’s also a hesitancy and fear to explore the alternative.

Where I usually land while crying and musing on my life is that it’s about intentionality.

While painful, it’s better to frequently ask ‘what if’’ than to stride blindly along an unquestioned path.

I often receive advice that sounds like “just decide what you want and go for it. “If you want to work then be proud. Make it happen. Hire help.”

Not that simple. It’s just not that simple.

My head and heart are inextricably intertwined. And those lines reach out into the world and envelope children. Messy. Tangled.

I cannot simply decide. I ride the waves in and out. Kissing the shore and pulling back. Underwater and out of breath. At once a part of the sea and also separate.

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