It hit me when I was about 7 months pregnant. Could I really do this? Could I have this baby and keep doing my job well too? That was the plan, but suddenly it seemed impossible. One night, I cried into my pillow. Crying is just about the worst thing you can do when you're going to be on television the next day.
I had reached a high point in my career. After years of missed vacations, late nights, early mornings, cancelled plans and broken relationships, I was finally anchoring my own show. I was covering technology and innovation and interviewing some of the smartest and most fascinating people in the world. I loved my job and I loved my husband. I felt I'd gotten to a point where I could get pregnant, take three months off, come back, and be a good mom and a good journalist, too.
But that night in bed, I was so discouraged that I began to doubt myself. Maybe I couldn't do it all. Maybe I would have to quit. If I didn't, I'd be miserably bad at my job and, even worse, a bad mom.
Then I realized there were so many other incredible moms in my world who had already navigated this fork in the road. I reached out to every mom I knew, working and non-working. Everyone was more than happy to share their personal story, the good and the bad. They all told me the same thing: I could do it and, if I loved my job that much, I should.
I'm lucky to know some of the most successful working moms out there. No one sugar-coated it. It would be hard, really, really hard at first, but it would get better. I crowdsourced their tips and tricks and rely on them heavily to this day. Many of my dearest friends actually decided to stop working to care for their children. I thought talking to them might make me feel more guilty, but they were more supportive than I ever could have imagined, and have been the loudest voices in my cheering squad along the way. One of them reminded me, it's not about the quantity of time we spend with our kids, it's about quality.
As many of my girlfriends have since faced the same dilemma, I've passed on my own story, hoping it will help them make the decision that's best for them. When I'm home with my son, I make it count. When I'm at work, I make it count. I couldn't do it without an amazing man who jumps out of bed in the middle of the night to help more often than I do.
With my show in its third year and counting, my 19 month old son said "I love you" for the first time this week. In that moment my world broke out into symphony. I knew I'd made the decision that was right for me.