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Rediff News  All News  » Getahead » Work-life balance: 'Yes, Mrs Nooyi, you are right. Women cannot have it all'. But...

Work-life balance: 'Yes, Mrs Nooyi, you are right. Women cannot have it all'. But...

Last updated on: July 15, 2014 12:48 IST

Work-life balance: 'Yes, Mrs Nooyi, you are right. Women cannot have it all'. But...


We'd asked you, dear readers to tell us how you strike a balance between your personal and professional lives.

Anila Nair from USA shares her experience of being a working mom.

Everyday I have to rip my heart out and hand it over to someone. 

I have to watch it cry and wail with arms opened towards me.

I have to fight back tears , smile and wave. 

And turn around and walk.

Yes , Indra Nooyi is right. Women cannot have it all. 

While in office, rummaging my bag for something -- a tiny hair clip or a single sock can make me crumble and want to run back to the day care and hug my kid.

In the middle of a meeting, I sometimes get distracted with the thought of that runny nose.

Every evening when I have to pick up a small bundle that has fallen asleep crying for me, my heart lurches.

Every time my elder daughter says 'can we go to the pool AT LEAST today?', I feel inadequate.

When someone in the 'neighboring ladies committee' says ' I really don't know how mothers can go to work leaving their kids with strangers?', I flinch.

When my friend forwards me the video of a maid harassing a kid with a note 'would you leave your purse with Maid? Then why do you leave your kid with her?' and I HAVE to argue vehemently saying I would never leave my kid with a maid whom I don't trust with even my purse, I feel drained of justifying myself to people.

Guilt, pain, futility, helplessness, tiredness -- these are feelings I have to deal with daily.

Yes, Mrs Nooyi, you are right. I can never have it all.

But when someone sends an email of appreciation for my great work, when my boss tells me how indispensable I have become to the team, there is a shine of pride in me.

When my commitment is applauded in meetings, my heart beats a little faster with glee.

When I buy an expensive saree for my mom or a mobile for my dad and need no one's 'permission' for it, I have a sense of achievement.

When my team mates sometime involuntarily get up from their seat when I enter the room, it makes me feel respected.

When my husband talks to his friends with pride about my promotion, I have a beam on my face.

Most people think that women work for the money, the so-called 'double income'. But these are the small things in my 'career' that actually give me joy.

The REAL reason that I have not quit.

I feel relieved that I do not have to endure what most of my stay-at-home friends have to endure -- 'being taken for granted'.

But yet, the morning arrives again, and it is time to rip out the heart again.

Yes Mrs Nooyi, we can never have it all.


Work-life balance: 'You have to sacrifice, but never quit'

Work-life balance: 'A woman is designed to multi-task'

'There is no work-life balance, only work-life integration'

Work-life balance: 'I feel both guilty and proud'

Are you a career woman too?

Do you, feel the guilt of not being around for your kids?

How do you cope with it?

How do you strike a healthy balance between your professional and personal lives?

Tell us! We want to know!

Share your experience and advice with working moms and moms-to-be.

Write in to (Subject: Work-life balance) and we'll publish the best ones right here on!

Image: Photograph used only for representational purposes.
Photographs: Jayanta Shaw JS/TW/ Reuters
Tags: BUT