“Why are you always working?” My mother’s voice echoes now in my head. It was a question she frequently raised over the years about my career, especially when she felt I was overstressed or losing my work-life balance. “I like working,” I’d always answer. And that would usually be that. At least until she asked again.
When I was little, my mother was the only woman on our block who worked outside the home. She started out of necessity during difficult financial times for our family, when I was four, continuing past my college graduation. She worked beyond when she “had to,” finding satisfaction in contributing at a job she liked. Still, for her, work and life were always separate, and her “life” was what happened outside of work.
That’s not the case with me. Maybe it was because (continue reading →)