37, partner at a global investment management firm
married, 2 kids (age 3, 7)
What does it mean for you to "have it all?"
To me, having it all means doing my best to balancing my family, my job and my charity work. It is recognizing that time is a zero sum game and sacrifices will need to be made. It is accepting that I will never be able to fully devote enough time to all three causes. It is making thoughtful choices and being at peace with the decisions I’ve made. I’d be lying if I say juggling everything is easy because it is unexpectedly difficult.
The scarcity of time is my biggest challenge. In an attempt to manage competing demands, I focus on the task at hand and make the most strategic use of my time.
First and foremost, I’m a mom and a wife. I am fortunate to have two happy, healthy and mischievous boys, and a husband who has always gone above and beyond to support my ambitions. They are the core of my being. They give meaning to my life. They take priority.
Professionally, I have over 15 years of experience in the financial services industry. I am fortunate to have a successful and rewarding career. My job is demanding – long hours with extensive travel, but I have a fair amount of flexibility over my schedule. While I spend a disproportionate amount of time at work or on the road, I’m with my kids when I need to be and can still get my work done remotely.
Outside of that, I contribute to many local charities with children’s and educational causes being the dearest to me. I am fortunate to have the opportunity to give back and make a difference. Selfishly, when I give my time and energy to others, I just feel good — about myself and my community.
What is the hardest thing you learned about yourself when you became a mom?
Maternal guilt is real, pervasive and persistent. I never feel like I’m a good enough at anything. I struggle with family vs. work proprieties. I constantly doubt my decisions. I feel like I never measure up to anyone’s expectation. While this inordinate amount of guilt is with me always, I’ve learned to better manage it. I’ve learned that only I can define what the best version of my life looks like. I learned that I can’t be everything to everybody. I learned to be brutally honest with my strength and shortcomings. I learned that when it comes to work-life balance, there’s no such thing as perfection. I learned to be extremely grateful for what I have.
Portrait by Vivian Johnson