Welcome to our Mommy Mogul column where we cover issues of importance for moms who are launching a new business, working a side gig, or managing work life and home life. Is there a topic you’d like us to address? Send your thoughts to tgarcia@ . And, as always, take to the comments with your feedback.
The premiere of The Real Housewives of New York left me feeling a certain kind of way. After I questioned why on Earth I still watched the show, I took great interest in seeing former cast member Bethenny Frankel make her return. She left the show years ago to pursue business ventures that have led to a successful Skinnygirl brand. Not only did she ink an estimated $100 million dollar deal, but continues to create products and author bestselling books that resonate with today’s consumer.
It would be easy to look at her life and think she has it all, but the “reality” of things is that she doesn’t.
“I’m the wealthiest homeless person I know,” joked Bethenny on the episode. Many viewers–including myself–were a bit shocked to see such a successful businesswoman hopping from hotel to hotel because her future ex-husband still resides in her home.
Can mom entrepreneurs really have it all?
In Bethenny’s case, the answer is no for now. In addition to a cancelled talk show, Frankel continues to duke it out with her husband Jason Hoppy in what seems like a neverending divorce battle.
I really hate this question as I feel it never gets directed towards men. Actress Jennifer Garner pointed out how no one asks a man about work-family balance, but folks constantly feel the need to do so with a woman. Sure children are generally more attached to their moms (e.g. breastfeeding and the bond from being in the belly), but we are career women too and shouldn’t be placed inside a box of limitations.
As a “mommypreneur” myself, I understand the grind many of us work to be able to build a career and still have a wonderful family life. As with everything, there’s no such thing as perfection, but does this equate to not having it all?
Before my husband and I had our first child, I was hustling and bustling throughout New York City. Watching RHONY really brought back memories of what I call my “Carrie days” (you know, Carrie Bradshaw from Sex and the City) as I was working to build up a name for myself in the industry. Heck I even met Bethenny and several other housewives at events. There were tons of events and memories I’ll never forget. Now that I have a child and another on the way, I understand that my life looks a bit different. We traded our two-bedroom condo in the city for a four-bedroom single family house in Oklahoma. Needless to say there aren’t many opportunities out here to get dolled up and mix with industry giants like I did in New York City, but I wouldn’t trade where I am for anything. Relaxed living might have slowed down my pace but gives me such a wonderful work/life balance. I’m no longer rushing out the door but instead am finding new ways to expand my goals. I’m doing what I love, getting paid to do it and having a flexible schedule to dedicate time to my husband and son. My heart is full and my goals are being met.
I think mom entrepreneurs can in fact have it all, but have to understand that the packaging might look different than expected. As with anything in life, there will be times of readjustment, and that’s okay. There’s no one-size-fits-all frame as each of us are on a different journey with a different end result.
I truly hope Bethenny finds happiness…and a home (Lord knows she has the money). While her story is sad to hear, there were in fact nuggets of hope. Even without a house to call her own, she is still able to adjust her schedule so she can be the face of her brand without sacrificing her time as a mother. To me, finding that balance is what really matters.
What are your thoughts on having it all?