Before I had a kid, I was convinced that I could handle anything. I'd worked my way from community college to the University of Michigan to a job at Google to a career in television hosting. I was no stranger to late nights, weekly business travel, and the never-ending grind of building a career. It was all I knew for the entirety of my 20s. I'd been through successes and failures. I'd made immense sacrifices, and I became almost too good at functioning on three hours of sleep and lots of caffeine. No sleep or free time? Come on—I would have this motherhood thing in the bag. I had it all figured out.
After I exchanged enough information with the Uber driver to confirm that neither one of us was likely a serial killer, the spotless sedan was quickly filled with enough small talk to occupy the brief ride. "What do you do?" "I'm a writer." "Ah, what do you write?" At the time, I was deep in writing my debut non-fiction book, Raising the Resistance: A Mother's Guide to Practical Activism, and had been busy typing away about feminism, reproductive justice, antiracism, and other topics that don't normally come up during a short Uber ride with a stranger but had consumed my work and much of my life. "I'm writing a book," I responded. "Oh! About what?" "Motherhood and political activism."
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Dear Liz, even before the pandemic, I had a hard time getting work. That big ten-year gap in my work history (even with the Navy service in there!) just trips people up. I don't understand how that kind of experience, plus my education, plus my term of service, doesn't seem to matter. I would get callbacks to ask me about my time out of the workforce (before I'd even get an interview) followed by radio silence. These days, I don't even get calls. I know the labor market is crunched right now, but I need to get back out there. If employers couldn't get past that gap before the pandemic, do I have any hope at finding work now?
What if you could make your own dreams of success come true AND be a loving mother to your children all at the same time?Yes, it's not easy. Balancing a career and motherhood is a challenge for many modern-day females. Moms aren't only expected to be caretakers of their children; they continue to be subjected to gender stereotypes, and they take on so much unpaid labor while also being under a lot of pressure to succeed and be able to provide for their families. But it's not impossible. Let me tell you how I made it all happen.
The way I see it, the words wealthy and rich are two totally different things. Rich is when you have money to spend — it's neither an object nor an issue. Wealth, on the other hand, is when you have enough of that money (along with land and other assets) to leave to your children and your children's children. From that perspective, I did not grow up in a wealthy family, and neither did Michael.
They are warriors, selfless human beings who are determined to give their kids opportunities they never had for themselves. There were willing to leave behind the comfort of family, love, and language for a shot: a shot at that dream we all talk about. It's not a lavish lifestyle but a dream. This dream is achieved through access to education, a good paying job, and opportunity. And it's all for you.
Risha Grant is an internationally renowned diversity, inclusion and bias expert. She is Founder & CEO of Risha Grant LLC, an award-winning diversity consulting and communications firm, as well as an edgy, educational and motivational speaker, and author of That's BS! How Bias Synapse Disrupts Inclusive Cultures.She covers these topics as NBC KJRH TV News 2 for You's community correspondent, host of the JustUs series, and through her Tulsa World column, Risha Talks. She has been featured in Forbes, The Financial Times, Off Script, Bloomberg Media, Black Enterprise, Radioactive Radio, Take the Lead Radio and WURD Radio among other podcasts, local and national media.
As the Head of Diversity and Inclusion and Cross-Cultural Marketing at Unilever, Mita's efforts to build an inclusive culture are being celebrated. Under her leadership, Unilever was named the #1 Company for Working Mothers by Working Mother Media in 2018. She also co-created the first of its kind Cultural Immersions series to increase the cultural competency of marketers training over 4,000 marketers to date.
Liz Elting, Founder and CEO of the Elizabeth Elting Foundation, is an entrepreneur, business leader, linguaphile, philanthropist, feminist, and mother. After living, studying, and working in five countries across the globe, Liz started TransPerfect out of an NYU dorm room. During her tenure as Co-CEO, she grew TransPerfect into the world's largest language solutions company, with over $600 million in revenue, 4,000+ employees, 11,000+ clients, and offices in more than 90 cities worldwide. Liz has been recognized as a NOW “Woman of Power & Influence", an Enterprising Women “Enterprising Woman of the Year," and one of Forbes' “Richest Self-Made Women."
Email firstname.lastname@example.org to get any of the professional advice you need from this pioneering professional!