I struggle with work life balance, and I don't even have kids. My biggest responsibility is Lady, a young pup I adopted last year. I freak out about not killing my furry child, but how do people with fragile human babies navigate life and work? I give kudos to my friends and others that are working on their careers and raising families. But really how do they do it?
At a recent Seattle Women in Technology dinner the topic came up about the lack of role models for modern families. Parents at the table talked about the challenges they faced from being a stoic mom not complaining about work and home life, to women talking about the guilt of going to work while their partners stayed at home. What many at the table felt was that we live in a time where family roles and dynamics are rapidly changing, yet their story lines aren't part of our mainstream culture.
Although popular media and work place policies have yet to catch up with working moms and stay at home dads -- the film "Having it All," by Seattle based filmmaker Vlada Knowlton gives working parents real-life experiences they can relate to through the perspectives of three women. The documentary chronicles their lives as they struggle to incorporate motherhood into their busy careers and marriages. "Having it All," opens up conversations for those considering to have kids, those that are knee deep in parenthood, and those who have raised their kids.
Vlada recently screened her film on Seattle's PBS channel, and was happy to hear positive feedback. She is pleased to hear from fans of the film that it doesn't force any sort of agenda or "this is how you're supposed to do it" onto the viewer. It just allows the viewer to share in these women's intimate stories and therefore to thoughtfully reflect on their own experiences without any judgment. What I like about Vlada's documentary is it's like she stumbled upon a new genre of "in real life," film, helping people plan, and process what it means to be "having it all."
"Having it All," is making its way down the west coast to be aired by Oregon Public Broadcasting. For those of you in the Seattle area, Parent Map will be hosting a screening on September 24th at the Stroum Jewish Community Center.