Imagine being called into work with no one to watch your 3-year-old. You’re 35 weeks pregnant and your husband is out of town, leaving you with only one option: Strap your tot to your back and report for duty.
That’s exactly what Dr. Megan Meier, an Oklahoma-based sports medicine physician, had to do when her sitter fell through and she had to get to a volunteer job at a high school game. As the team's doctor, Meier told People she had to make it work because if she didn't go, there would be no one to provide medical care at the entire event.
Photograph by Facebook
Meier posted a viral photo of herself on Facebook taking care of a football player on the sidelines while toting her daughter in a baby carrier.
“I posted this to a group of physician mom's (sic) because I thought they would enjoy it—seeing a visual representation of what we all do each and every day,” she wrote.
Even though the post was meant for other medical moms, it struck a chord with parents outside of the field. Let’s face it, there are so many moms who find ways to get creative when it comes to career and motherhood.
"I have had so many people reach out to me, telling me how inspiring they find the photo for a variety of reasons," she said. "I have connected with so many strong, interesting people who have shared their stories, their struggles and their victories. It's pretty awesome," she told ABC.
It’s possible to have it all, but it’s just impossible to have it all at once.
Meier went on to say that moms find solutions to any given situations, and they don’t make excuses. Fortunately for her, the teams that she works with are very supportive, which makes dealing with these stressful situations so much easier.
I know these types of situations all too well, and sometimes our multitasking plan doesn’t always work out the way we want them to. In fact, it can get pretty embarrassing.
I was called into work one day, and I didn’t have anyone to watch my then 5-year-old. For some reason, her school schedule conflicted with my work schedule, so my husband agreed to pick her up from my job on his way home.
The plan was for her to watch TV and do artwork. But little did I know that she'd end up drawing all over my work desk. To make matters worse, she video bombed me during a live newscast. I was mortified. Luckily, I had very understanding co-workers.
"I really believe that you can have it all and find a great balance to a multi-faceted career and life. However, it takes a lot of hard work and improvisation at times," Meier wrote.
But is that balance really possible?
I've certainly struggled with finding that perfect balance over the past six years. That struggle is the main reason why I felt that quitting my full-time job was necessary. Being a working mom of one had its challenges, but adding another child to the mix was 10 times harder. After I gave birth to my second child in 2013, it eventually got to a point where I was spreading myself too thin.
For me, the reality is that there is no perfect balance between career and motherhood. You just have to find the right balance that fits your family’s lifestyle and run with it. It’s possible to have it all, but it’s just impossible to have it all at once.
Regardless of your take, Meier said it best, “It takes a strong community of people supporting each other to make it work.”
She may not be old enough to drive or get her ears pierced, and you trust the babysitter with your children’s lives. But unless you have nanny cams staking out every inch of your home, you don’t really know what she's up to while you’re away. Unfortunately, these crazy stories from moms who were sitters themselves back in the day will offer little comfort. (Though they all ultimately had happy endings.)