Jul 19 2012
What do Marissa Mayer and I have in common? Yes, she’s going to be Yahoo’s new CEO, and I’m not, so that’s one small way in which we are different. But we are both seven months pregnant–her with her first child, and me with my fourth. Mayer’s new job–and the timing overlap with her pregnancy/imminent maternity–has set talking heads’ tongues wagging.
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Jul 18 2012
By now we all know that Marissa Mayer was just hired as the new CEO of Yahoo!. I had never heard of Ms. Mayer, and I barely remembered what Yahoo! was, and I certainly wouldn’t be writing about either of them, except for one thing.
Ms. Mayer is knocked up. And Yahoo! knew about it when they hired her.
Mothers around the world rejoice whenever a preggo gets hired, and I’m happy to march in that parade. But that’s not what interests me about this story. No, what actually brought me back to the keyboard was a post I recently read about Ms. Mayer’s plans for her maternity leave. According to the author, “She’s planning on taking a mere few weeks, and she’s been vocal about the fact that she plans to work much of the time.” Read the rest of this entry →
Jun 25 2012
So, I spent last weekend in Vegas.
Um, you might say, isn’t that a strange choice for a babymoon? Indeed it would be–but this was no babymoon. I was sans-husband, and in Vegas for a full week–longer than any human being should ever be in Vegas. Especially human beings that have another human being, almost fully formed, living in their belly. But I had a work obligation, so off to Vegas I went, just shy of eight months pregnant. Read the rest of this entry →
Jun 22 2012
The same year I finished college, I also attended my friend’s graduation at Barnard College. While the commencement speech that year at the University of Michigan had been sort of lackluster, I expected that at Barnard I would be inspired. That perhaps I would be talked into a more ambitious plan than following a boyfriend to New Mexico to live in an adobe hut and work at a clothing store (CP Shades to be more specific and the indignity more acute).
Instead, the speaker at Barnard was Joyce Purnick, a longtime columnist for the New York Times and the first woman to head the Metro section at the paper. That day she addressed the lawn full of wide-eyed young women about to enter the work force and told them: Read the rest of this entry →
Jun 21 2012
Would women be better equipped to fight the war if more highly educated mothers went back to work?
Get out your virtual pitchforks. I’m about to defend Elizabeth Wurtzel.
Last week, the writer-turned-lawyer curried ire with many a stay-at-home mother (#sahm, in Twitter verse), when she denounced “1% wives”–referring to America’s most privileged, educated women–as collaborators in the “war on women.”
In her red-meat-for-the-blogosphere polemic, Wurtzel argues that “being a mother isn’t really work” because it’s not selective. “A job that anyone can have is not a job, it’s a part of life, no matter how important people insist it is (all the insisting is itself overcompensation),” she writes. Read the rest of this entry →
Jun 19 2012
Being a “real feminist” is apparently when you write an article for a national publication deliberately denigrating other women, and get paid to do so.
That was what I learned from reading Elizabeth Wurtzel’s essay in The Atlantic, “1% Wives Are Helping Kill Feminism And Make The War On Women Possible.” The essay is fairly mean-spirited. Here, for example, is the first paragraph:
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Jun 14 2012
I love the show Mad Men, and am amused that Sally Draper and I are about the same age. Nostalgia is not my reason for my being such a fan. Rather, the storytelling is great, the characters are complex, and the narrative is compelling.
We baby boomers thought we invented sex. Don and company prove us wrong. We thought women were treated primarily as sexual objects and had a hard time getting ahead professionally, even if they were smart and capable. Peggy and Joan prove us right. We thought that our mothers didn’t do very much at home (I still wonder about that) and Betty shows us what the consequences of that can be. And, in the Mad Men world, and my own world at that time, the only mother who was “working” did so because “she had to.” Many of the rest of us, like Betty’s family, had “Negro maids” to do the housework and child care. Read the rest of this entry →
May 24 2012
Tara Filowitz Arrey just shared her day care nightmares, even before her baby is born. Now let’s hear from Renee, who proposes the perfect solution for working moms.
I just saw Debbie Kolben’s December article in the Forward. (Sorry, Debbie, I have a lot to read!) Debbie, Kveller’s editor-in-chief, described her search for a good, Jewish day care center for her young child. Her very important point was that the real way, the very best way, to ensure Jewish continuity (the big topic in Jewish think-tank discussions these days–and for many, many previous days) is to create Jewish day care facilities, to create environments in which the very youngest Jews can learn, and live, Judaism. Read the rest of this entry →
May 17 2012
Well, it’s not as if you’re going to be some sort of hausfrau, you know?” a friend said to me over the phone. It was just a passing remark. You know, like how a drive-by shooting is just a short visit.
We were discussing my decision to leave my job as New York correspondent of the Jerusalem Post. It was a hard decision but I felt that I needed to focus on other things–namely, my long-in-progress novel, various freelance gigs, my family, and my pregnancy. To me, the choice had felt like a deliberate choice, individuality above expectations. My friend’s remark made clear, though, that to others, my choice could easily come across as a failure. Read the rest of this entry →
Apr 19 2012
My CV could use a good dusting off.
First birthdays are bound to bring out the reflective in a person, and I’m no exception. Avi and Maya turn one tomorrow, and for the last few weeks I’ve been reflecting like crazy. I’ve learned a few things this year. Here they are, in no particular order:
It’s not helpful to compare myself to others. Yes, its super crazy hard not to, and I’ve always been one prone to torturing myself by making illogical comparisons, but I understand now that when it comes to my girls and how they’re faring, it’s not helpful to measure them against French babies or Chinese babies or my friends’ babies or the babies that people write about in parenting books. That practice generally does nothing more than wreck havoc with my already havoc-ridden brain. We could all parent better, and most of us are doing the best we can. Read the rest of this entry →