Motherhood: A View from Some of the Moms across Gray
A mom is a special gift. It seems no matter how young or how old you are, a mom is that person in your life who knows how to love and support you in a unique and endearing way. A mom is not something you ever really outgrow. But, being a mom comes with its challenges. And being a mom who is raising a family while working a job at the same time is no small task.
Here at Gray, we are filled with women who proudly wear the mom badge. These women are distinguished professionals who excel in their jobs, all the while raising (or, in some cases, already raised) leaders at home.
We were given the opportunity to speak with some of our Gray moms about how they balance working and raising a family, their advice to new moms, and some of the women who inspire them.
How do you maintain a healthy work-life balance?
Rita Clark,“It’s managing the balance of wanting to be the best mom, wife, daughter, and wanting to succeed in your professional life. Admittedly, we sometimes put too much emphasis on our title and the amount of income we must provide our children for the material items they need. Sometimes, the best thing we can provide our children is invaluable – it’s our time and unconditional love.”
Danielle Clements, Customer Experiences Coordinator – “I make time for the things I love outside of being a working mom, including working out. You can’t forget to take care of yourself!”
Yukie Cooper, Manager, Business Development – “Over time, I have learned to enjoy what I’m doing at each moment and not worry about what I will have to do later. Worrying will be a distraction and will keep you from living. I try not to worry about my girls’ whereabouts when I am at work, and I try not to think about tomorrow’s meeting agenda when I spend time with my family and friends.”
What women in your life have inspired you?
Mikey Ransdell, Administrative Assistant – “My mother and my sister inspire me. They are both strong women who love their children fiercely and will do anything for them as well as the rest of the family.”
Megan McGeorge, Manager, Project Management, Gray Solutions, a Gray company – “I’m blessed to be surrounded by so many strong and inspiring women. My mother has been a guiding light as I learn my own way of motherhood. She has always been so encouraging and supportive of me. There’s also my sister-in-laws, who make motherhood look so seamless and easy. Additionally, my best friends, who pushed me and challenged me in college and early in my career, have helped me be the woman I am today. Also, I’m inspired by the countless women who are paving the way for working moms.”
Kelli Williams, Assistant Design Manager – “As a new mother, I have been very inspired by my own mom and my grandma. My grandma passed away when I was four years old, but she has lived on through family stories and recipes. From the memories shared with me, I know my grandma as a strong woman who wasn’t afraid to try something new and unfamiliar. She managed her home and children, cooked amazing meals, maintained a close relationship with her friends, and had a loving family. My mom is similar to her in so many ways, but she has balanced a career on top of everything else. I hope to have the same sense of balance in my life as I raise my son, Cameron.”
Allison Gamez Pickerel, Business Development Specialist – “My mother, grandmother, and my sister inspire me. My sister’s ability to balance a successful career, pursue hobbies, and still give 110% to her children every day inspires me to work hard in everything I do– yet, still sit down at the end of the day, soaking in every giggle and baby snuggle. My mother and Gigi inspire me to approach circumstances in both my career and parenthood with love and patience.”
Clark – “My mother, maternal grandmother, and three aunts. They all inspire me for various reasons, particularly their life, their wisdom, and their love that have empowered me to achieve various goals, pattern myself to the person I want to be, and persevere through some life struggles.”
If you could give a new, working mom advice on how to balance work and home life, what would you tell her?
Clark – “Don’t try to be perfect; it’s not possible. Focus on what’s important. And in today’s world, it may mean less social media posting or not planning the birthday party that requires an event planner. Focus on your family, faith, and yourself.”
Clements – “To all my fellow working mommas out there, work hard so you can soak up all the moments you can at home with your new baby. Also, enjoy your work! I look forward each day I am in the office at Gray, because for me, working and being surrounded by people I enjoy makes me a better mom when I leave.”
Do you have any favorite Mother’s Day traditions in your family?
McGeorge – “We always do a big family dinner and cook/clean for the matriarch, so she can enjoy a break.”
Cooper – “My two daughters give me handmade Mother’s Day cards every year. They surprise me every year with very creative, sweet cards. The collection of the cards they have made for me is my most precious possession.”
Ransdell – “My favorite thing we do with my mom is spending quality time together. Life can get so hectic, so it is nice to be able to sit back and just take a day to truly spend time with each other. I am looking forward to continuing this tradition.”
Williams – “We do not have any specific Mother’s Day traditions, but this year we are going to brunch. I would like to make that a new tradition followed by an afternoon spent outside on our farm.”
Do you have one favorite memory of parenthood that you’d like to share?
Cooper – “My two daughters have completely different personalities, and they never spent time together growing up. But a few years ago, they started bonding, and now they are literally inseparable. It is priceless to see them being so loving and supporting each other.”
Clements – “One favorite memory that comes to mind is when we took Carter to his first UK football tailgate. We didn’t make it in the game, but we got to experience the amazing energy–or big blue madness as they say, as a family. We can’t wait to take him to even more football games this fall. Go Cats!”
If you could describe motherhood in one word, what would it be?
Pickerel – “Transformational – constant change, learning, and growth.”
Ransdell – “Miraculous (our twins are science babies).”
Cooper – “Selfless. The moment you become a mother, you are no longer the same you. Suddenly you have somebody more important than yourself.”
Clements – “Resilience.”
Clark – “Blessing. Children are truly a gift from God. Though it can be challenging, it is the most rewarding role as you watch your child grow into a young man/woman and start their own family. I’m now blessed with my first grandchild–such a priceless gift.”
Williams – “I don’t think there is one word to describe motherhood and all it encompasses. But, if I had to pick one it would be: transformative. The physical, mental, and emotional transformation you go through is extraordinary.”
With your new experience as a mom, what was the best advice you received before entering motherhood?
McGeorge – “The days are long, but the years are short. This advice has guided me to cherish every moment, even the hard parts, because time goes too fast (even though it doesn’t feel like it in the moment). I don’t want to look back and feel like I missed my child growing up, because I was wishing for the next milestone to happen.”
Williams – “The one piece of advice I have passed on to others in my short three months as a mom is: “You are the best mother for your child. You know what is best for them, so take all of the advice with a grain of salt.”
Ransdell – “Don’t listen to anyone’s advice. You have to parent how it works for you and your family.”
From everyone here at Gray to all the moms, Happy Mother’s Day!
If you would like to learn more about the team members who make Gray possible, visit gray.com/people.
Also, if you would like to learn more about joining the Gray family, please visit gray.com/careers.