This year “bring your kid to work day” took place on April 28, 2016. I decided to take my son to work this year because he’s now 4 and he has become very curious about what mommy does when she’s away from home. I thought this would be a good opportunity for my son to learn about the field I’m in (construction) and see how I handle business away from home. You may be thinking that 4 years old is too early to expose your kids to this kind of environment but this is probably one of the best things you could do for your kids.
I’ve been working from home since my son was born and occasionally I still work at home when something comes up. My son has witnessed mommy working long days at home, doing business on the phone, bringing work home to finish it, delegating assignments to my staff, and doing everything else that a VP mom needs to do to a get a job done whether at home or in the office. Since my son has been exposed to my work life at an early age, this world is not new to him. Even with my busy schedule, I made time for my son, our family and myself. Little did I know that this work-life would educate my son on WORK ETHICS and work/life balance, something that the workforce is lacking today.
Bring your kids to work day was going to put this to the test. What was my son going to think when he saw mommy at work? Would he learn anything from this? Would he be interested in learning about my field? I wasn’t sure what the turnout was going to be but I decided to challenge my boy and take him for a ride. I must admit I was a little nervous because I wasn’t sure if he was going to behave or if he would even enjoy working with me for 8 hours but none of this was stopping me from taking him to work.
We arrived to the office at 10 AM that day ready to work. From the minute I walked in, there were issues that had to be dealt with, orders that had to be placed, documents that had to be signed, clients to attend to, and a lot of important decisions to make. My son spent a few hours in my office observing me on the phone, writing emails to clients, and dealing with my employees. At first he only wanted his iPad and nothing else but I gave him his space while I worked. Then all of sudden, my son asks me for a laptop, paper and pencil. He wanted to “do business just like mommy” and he event asked to email one of my customers because he wanted to help LOL. Was I shocked? Not really. I was impressed with how interested he was in learning what I did. What 4 year old wants to email and do sales calls? Not many. But here was my 4 year old mimicking what mommy was doing. This put everything in perspective for me.
For about 5 years now I have struggled to keep up with the work-life balance but especially with the guilty emotions we experience as working moms. Many times I wanted to quit my job to stay home full time because I thought that was the best thing for me. What I did not know was that being a stay at home mom and wife was NOT what I wanted to be and that was ok.
YES, my son became my world the minute he was born. YES, I wanted to spend all the time with him to mold him into a beautiful human being. YES, I was in love with him and wanted to give him all the love I can give him. YES, I want my son to know he’s my PRIORITY!
But I also knew…
I didn’t want to give up on my dreams. I didn’t want to settle because that’s what society thinks is best for me. I did not want to be the unhappy resentful mom 10 years later that hates life and lives in regret. I didn’t want to use my son as an excuse to give up.
Thankfully, I listened to that little voice in my head that kept telling me to do what made me happy but what was also best for my family and I.
This is why “Bring your Kid to Work Day” was important and meaningful to me. This day meant that I finally came to terms with my working mom life. What did my 4 year old learn on this day??
Always follow your heart but also follow your passions
Do whatever makes you happy because that’s all that matters at the end of the day
Work hard and never give up
Mom works but she still loves you dearly
We make a sacrifice to leave home because we want to follow our goals and dreams too
Business lesson 101- Good customer service goes a long way
Treat other people like you want to be treated
Don’t be lazy- work hard and smart and you will get what you want
Be friendly, socialize and always make new friends
Money matters but it doesn’t matter more than family
Although mom is busy, you are still my number 1
These are lessons that will stay with him forever!
The joy I felt hearing my son talk about his experience at work with me was so touching and rewarding at the same time. He couldn’t stop talking about what he did, the people he met and how he wanted to return to work :-). This experience was definitely one of the best experiences I’ve had with my son. I would recommend it for all the amazing moms out there that want to teach their little ones a thing or two about work, life and balance.
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