Meet Susan … New Millienium Woman?
Meet Susan, has 3 children, and lives in Nigeria, Africa, is an Events Manager for a healthcare company. We asked her how she
1. Describe to us a typical day, in the life of Susan?
I used to get up at 5.30 but since I started my new job (which is closer to my house) Iï¿½m usually up by 6am then I wake the nanny up (thatï¿½s if sheï¿½s not already awake) and start getting myself ready for work. The boys (theyï¿½re on holiday) usually barge into our room by 6.30am which makes getting ready a bit challenging but thatï¿½s a welcome challenge! We say our prayers.
Once Iï¿½m ready, Iï¿½m off to the kitchen to check what the children will eat. I potter around a bit ensuring that the kids are settled and thereï¿½re no issues before leaving for work. Iï¿½m usually back home from work by 7pm by which time the kids are either having their dinner or watching TV. Usually I assist with feeding the boys and clearing up so that my nanny can have a break. I also sort out the laundry and check the fridge, freezer and storeroom to ensure that weï¿½re not about to run out of anything. Sometimes I have something to eat then I brush the boyï¿½s teeth and read them a bedtime story. Bussy (my last child) doesnï¿½t settle that easily, but eventually she sleeps. Then I watch some TV whilst waiting for hubby to return ï¿½ sometimes Iï¿½m so tired that I just sort out his food (so that all he has to do is microwave) before going off to bed.
2. Tell us a little bit about your work, what is it exactly you do?
Iï¿½ve just started this job. I used to work for a big telecoms company as a product specialist. Now I work for a healthcare company as the events manager for a new brand which is due to be launched shortly. My responsibilities are to develop, plan and implement consumer events that will help promote the brand as well as provide the target market with an opportunity to interact with the brand. Iï¿½m also doubling-up as the chief image maker for the brand. Itï¿½s a challenging job and Iï¿½m thoroughly enjoying it. It requires learning and understanding the target market then keying into what makes them tick. The objective is to build brand awareness as well as loyalty by forming a relationship with the target group. Events provide a good medium to engage the target market closely to get them to FEEL the brand and bond with it.
3. Why is it you work?
Is it something you love to do, is it for economical or other reasons? Both really. I enjoy working as it gives me a sense of fulfillment. I feel that Iï¿½m making a positive contribution to society. Thatï¿½s not to say that stay at home mothers do not contribute to society. In fact I take my hat off to home makers because itï¿½s a tough job. I believe children benefit tremendously when one parent is available at home. However this is not always financially possible.
4. What would life be like if you did not have to work? i.e. would you be fulfilled or unfulfilled, how different do you think your life would be?
My husband would certainly love it. It would take a while to get used to. I think I would feel unfulfilled to begin with. However, I would have to pack the day with activities for the children. I would draw-up an activity plan. We would have learning time, TV time and nap time. I would learn together with them, how to bake.. Then go out for some ice cream afterwards. Actually that is fantasy! I would probably spend all my time yelling at them and their nanny.! I know I will have less guilt trips about not being at home for them.
5. How do you manage to combine career and family?
Planning, patience focus and plenty of grace and favour from the Almighty God
6. Do you feel that you are managing it well?
On the whole yes, though I have some off days.
7. What type of support system do you have?
Thank God for his blessings, I have a loving and considerate husband. I also have 2 hardworking and helpful nannies (one live-in). My sister in-laws are always ready to help. My sisters live abroad but theyï¿½re always sending things to us – God bless them. I also have a few great friends who I can rely on.
8. What role does your husband play in supporting you?
My husband plays a crucial role. Being loved by him encourages me to be the best and try harder. Heï¿½s a hands-on dad and the kids adore him so much. Weï¿½re a good team. Heï¿½s quick to assist when he sees my hands are full. I know I can rely on him. God has truly blessed me with him.
9. Have you ever had a terrible day when you desperately wished things would be different?
Please tell us about that experience. Yes o! The beginning of the year was a nightmare. The devil is a liar. I used to surround myself with lots of help particularly when I was in telecoms. I had such long working hours and I felt the need to have 2 nannies and a cook to assist. I also thought that by having 3 people I was safe enough as if one decided to leave then I would at least have 2 people left behind. Little did I know that they had all plotted not to return. I donï¿½t believe their lives were miserable. I donï¿½t believe they had too much work. I used to go out of my way to ensure that they were fine and fed even bringing back goodies when ever I took the children out. I had put together something special for each one before they went for Xmas. I was surprised when none of them resumed on the agreed date. I felt so betrayed and disappointed. Especially as Bussy who was 5 months at the time had bonded so well with all of them and the boys used to play football with the cook. My husband & I prayed to God for mercy. I started considering quitting work. It was tough but our God is a perfect God and heï¿½s blessing add no sorrows. Today I can say that the Lord delivered us as I later discovered that one of the nannies was sleeping with the cook! Can you imagine? God is just so wonderful! Now I have 2 nannies; one mama who comes during the day and a young lady who lives in. Thereï¿½re both doing very well however my hope is not in them ï¿½ but in God I trust!
10. What advice do you have for other working mothers?
Work smarter at work, that way you get to go home on time instead of cultivating the habit of working late because you have spent most of the day chatting with colleagues. Plan ahead. Always ensure you interact with your kids. Donï¿½t leave their nannies to do everything. Treat their nannies as your own children especially if theyï¿½re young. Encourage them and try to find out what they desire in their lives and help if you can. Ensure that they know how much you value them however help them to understand that the Lord makes all things good so itï¿½s not a problem if they decide they want to move on. Lift up your husband. Heï¿½s still the head of the family even if youï¿½re both contributing to the kitty. Make time to catch up with each other. Communication is SO VITAL!
11. What advice do you have for single women?
Please be patient. Put all things in prayer. Let the Holy Spirit lead you and surround you so that the right man comes to you. The devil has a special hatred for woman as we give birth to life through God. The devil does not desire life so heï¿½ll attempt to mislead and frustrate but he will not succeed. Use your time wisely and study and meditate on the Word. Stand on His word concerning finding the flesh of your flesh and the bone of your bone. Heï¿½s word will never return void!