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How do you define "having it all?"

Posted by on Dec. 13, 2012 at 12:00 AM
  • 59 Replies
1 mom liked this

Can women have it all?

This is such a HUGE topic. Beyond HUGE. How do we even start to talk about this?  Can women have it all? Well, I'm in firm agreement that the answer to this is no....and I add a little footnote to my answer. We can't have it all at the same time. This has been mentioned, debated, dissected mentioned in books (fiction and non-fiction), movies, The Wall Street Journal, The New York Times...and every blog that is out there and in yesterday's video. Some think maternity leave, health care, education system, workplace norms, and probably 15 other elements to our lives have created this, including our own expectations...and probably all of those theories have valid points.

But, as I've worked outside the home and now work at home (not just a choice for a career but because for financial reasons, I have to make additional income for my family), I've realized there is no perfect answer or solution. We can't have it all at the same time, but when we stop trying to do that, it makes it a lot easier.

Many a night on the couch, I've reflected back on the day. I wrote a great post and figured out an interesting angle for an essay, but my kiddo was doing her own thing...I wasn't doing the best mothering, per se. And then there would be fabulous trip home on the bus with the kiddo, when I could hear my phone buzzing with work emails, yet I ignored them and focused on her....I wasn't a great writer, per se.

And don't even get me started on when I am or am not a great wife. I never "have it all" at one moment, but I "have it all" at specific points through the day when what "all" is in being in the moment with one thing...but does that count? And what about those days when I wasn't a great anything. (Which is why I keep a quote -- by now you know I am kind of quote-obsessed -- near the kitchen sink that reads "Be better than you were yeaterday.")

I find it fascinating how it all goes back to how we define having it all. How we evaluate ourselves and what it means to have it all, exactly...what it is we want and have (or don't have). Me? For me, it is funny, the more of the crazy juggle I have to do on any given day, the more I realize what is important. Because on those days, I know I can't do it all, I know I won't be perfect, I'll have to say no to something (I love Andrea's exercise to figure out what you have to so no to in order to say yes to what is important).

Sometimes, for just plain can't be budged reasons, we can't always choose what we would like to do in any certain moment. But -- and this is big but-- if we can more often than not, then we are "having it all."

What do you think? How do you define having it all...and do you have it all? Do you struggle with your own expectations of being the perfect mom/wife/careerwoman/person/sister?

Š aluxum

by on Dec. 13, 2012 at 12:00 AM
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by on Dec. 13, 2012 at 9:45 AM
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I think having it all means being happy,healthy and secure and having a loving family and support.

by on Dec. 13, 2012 at 9:57 AM

Having it all to me means whatever it takes to make your life complete and happy, if thats a career or your own business or staying at home and raising kids, I think its different for everyone

by on Dec. 13, 2012 at 10:54 AM
3 moms liked this

Having my heart transformed to God's will.

by on Dec. 13, 2012 at 11:10 AM

I think its hard to talk about this, not because of how "hard" it is to have it all.......but because the definition of "it all" is so drastically different between person to person.  I mean, there are general trends that pop up, but overall.......the way that we approach these thoughts are drastcially different.

To me, having it all would mean a house of my own, happy family, living comfortably, and having a crafting room to myself and some extra time everyday.....crafting.  The otehr stuff is "extra" or the "road to get there", but tehy don't particularly "define" a part of my "having it all".

Do I have it all?  No, and I don't think anyone should ever be complacent enough to think that they've reached a point of "having it all".  Its nice having something fundamental that you are working towards.

by Silver Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 11:40 AM

Having everything that makes me happy and my world complete (wonderful husband and children, great finances, career, lots of time for fun with my family, etc...)

by on Dec. 13, 2012 at 11:47 AM
Love this answer. When you do this everything else falls onto place.

Quoting SlapItHigh:

Having my heart transformed to God's will.

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by Bronze Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 12:48 PM

IDK...I believe i have it all right now(by my standards).. I'm at a place in my life where i'm truly happy/content.

by Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 3:20 PM

I think it means having basic needs met, money to pay the bills, health and happiness. 

by Bronze Member on Dec. 13, 2012 at 3:24 PM

The notion that just because you aren't focusing on something all the time means you aren't doing a good job at it is wrong. Nothing should require 100% of your time & energy.

Mothering obviously comes close. But even then, you can have down time.  Your kids can play alone for a time while you get stuff done. That is actually good for them.

I think that if you are happy with where you life is going, even if there are specific things you'd like to change, then you have it all. One person's definition of having it all will be very different from someone else's.

I do agree with a PP who said 'having my heart transformed to God's will'.  If you can truely do that, then you will have it all.

by on Dec. 13, 2012 at 3:28 PM
To me, having it all is feeling successful, happy and satisfied in whatever situation you're in. Happiness and health is truly having it all.
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