There's not a person in the world who actually enjoys going on a job interview. Now imagine losing your babysitter right before the big day and having to bring your baby along with you to the meeting -- in a car seat, no less.
Turns out, Michelle Obama experienced that nightmare scenario firsthand with daughter Sasha when she interviewed years ago with the University of Chicago Medical Center, Today reports. "Who I was at the time was a breastfeeding mother of a four-month-old and I didn't have a babysitter, so I promptly took Sasha to the interview with me," she told attendees at Monday's White House Working Families Summit.
Although FLOTUS referred to that time as "probably the worst time in my motherhood," the experience turned out to be a blessing in disguise. "I thought, look, this is who I am," she said. "I've got a husband who's away. I've got two little babies. They are my priority. If you want me to do the job, you've got to pay me to do the job and you've got to give me flexibility." Her honesty didn't deter her potential employer. She landed the job and even worked her way up to vice president.
Like Michelle Obama, I've also been fortunate in that almost all of my employers get that family is my top priority. But unfortunately, not everyone has such understanding higher-ups, a fact that the President and Mrs. Obama both acknowledged at the summit. And not every mom is in a financial position to walk away from a job that doesn't offer her the flexibility and time to be with her family.
The purpose of this first-ever summit was to start a larger conversation about making the workplace better for working parents and to garner support for policies that would bring the United States more in line with other countries. Among the topics on the agenda were paid maternity and paternity leave, affordable childcare and preschools, equal pay, and a more flexible work environment. If even just one or two of those came to pass, it would offer us parents the precious resources we need to balance work and family.
Tell us: Are you a working parent? How do you juggle the demands of a job and a family?
What's Your Parenting Style?
Getting ready to go back to work after baby? Check out our tips for making a smooth transition back from maternity leave. And if you're considering becoming a SAHM, you can use our Stay at Home Calculator to see if you can afford to make the move. To keep up with the latest baby news, don't forget to like All About Babies on Facebook!
Image of Michelle Obama courtesy of Shutterstock