I’ve been thinking a lot lately about the expectations people have before they become parents. That’s in large part due to the news story about Marissa Mayer becoming CEO of Yahoo while pregnant. I know I’m coming late to the game in this discussion, but it’s one that intrigues me. There are a lot of positives here: A Fortune 500 company has hired a woman to be their CEO. She’s a spunky 37 years old. (One year younger than me, which makes me wish I had studied harder in undergrad. Damn you, Cellar and late night Cluck-U chicken! My shoes, my waistline, AND my GPA suffered for you!). And even more progressive: Yahoo hired her knowing she was pregnant, and they didn’t care. I think all of that is good progress for us gals.
But there’s another part of me that thinks this chick is crazy if she thinks she can take “a couple of weeks” for maternity leave and hop back to the office. She also plans to work during her maternity leave. I know she has a gazillion dollars and staff galore, but whew — Marissa is in for the ride of her life.
Before I had kids, I swore that I would never beg my mother to stay that first night home from the hospital. Corey and I are capable adults, I told myself, and we will use this early time home to celebrate our new little family. Here’s how it really went down:
“Mom, do you think you can stay a few hours longer?”
“Sure. I’m happy help out.”
Corey whispers to me while hiding in the bathroom “Ask if she’ll spend the night. We can’t do this by ourselves.” Never had he uttered a truer statement. His idea was genius. I hollered from the down the hall, “Do you think you could spend the night,” I pleaded.
“Um, I didn’t really come prepared to spend the night. I don’t even have my toothb–”
“I have one! I have an extra you can have!” I would have given her all of the toothbrushes on God’s green earth if it meant she didn’t leave us alone in a sea of baby wipes.
I admire Marissa’s can-do spirit because I’ve been there–I had plans to re-paint the living room on my maternity leave. I was an excellent parent before I had kids. I hope Marissa has a lot of extra toothbrushes in the house, just in case.