to be a woman
to be a mother
to be a professional
to be educated and ambitious
to be in a relationship
to have children
to be an expatriate
to be who you are
where you are
you find yourself making choices
your life is a pile of puzzle pieces
you think and look and you shuffle the pieces
you try and go to work and it doesn‘t work
there is no work for you in this city
you have children
you have no childcare
you stay at home
you are miserable
you stay at home
you are happy
you go to work and it works
there is no work for your partner in this city
you are an expatriate
you are a mother
you shuffle the pieces
Architect, humanitarian worker
Mother to a 3 year old daughter
The arrival of my daughter changed my career completely.
My area was emergency response, so I’d get a 48 hour notice before I was on the plane and I’d be gone for at least a month. You can’t do this kind of work and have a family. I was employed at my own organisation when I had the baby and was hoping to go back to work, but I was fired just as I had to come back after the maternity leave. This was the main complication, being fired wasn’t one of the scenarios I imagined for myself. I am doing freelance humanitarian support work or consultancy at the moment, but there is not enough work in a year to support myself, unless I travel. Re-entering job markets over the age of forty is not easy and if you want to change the line of work is even harder.
That’s something that has to change. I don’t know why, but women who work at management level and decide to have a family, have to keep doing it, otherwise they become less credible in the eyes of their colleagues and when it comes to inviting them to projects and such, they don’t come to mind as easily anymore. It’s all about staying in the loop.
I’ve been lucky to have had two careers already, one as an architect and one as an humanitarian worker and to have achieved some results in both. So I felt ok with being stuck here with a baby, accept to not have enough work,and be lucky to be supported by my partner.