I want to be in the league of women who create a niche for themselves and also pull along a mass of other women while moving forward. It is only then that I will consider myself successful. What I’m writing about now is only the path I have started walking on recently.
It so happened that only two months had passed since I started working as a Content Writer at a Pune-based firm when my hubby shared the news of him being hired by a CMM Level 5 IT company; a big name and in Kolkata. That was the moment when my fear took over my delight and I couldn’t respond. The obvious consequences of quitting my job and relocating left me crying the entire night and being sleepless. I was feeling sick the next day and took a leave from office. As usual, I sent our daughter, Khushi to her crèche, so that I could cry my heart out in solitude. I had got the job I had after a hiatus of several years and every time I can't expect to get an opportunity like this.
By evening I had decided that I won’t relocate to be unemployed again. Obviously, with that decision came retaliation from everyone known to me, except my parents.
In most cases, with a woman’s career, the dreams are only yours, so you can’t expect everybody to have the same zeal to materialize them, yet some rare exceptions exist. So I knew that I had to convince my hubby and then the rest would be assured. At times my patience gave way, but I was determined.
I had heard many real life stories of women known to me who followed their husbands in such a situation and quit their jobs. But I also knew their post-relocation stories of depression, which frightened me. With that reference, friends and relatives told me, “This is the fate of all women”. I knew that was the conventional practice but in this digital era, I needed to be unconventional. Another factor that concerned me was that every decision of mine would affect Khushi, so I would also have to be wise.
Finally, I told my husband that it’s time we both needed to support each other’s careers and that would eventually be good for Khushi. I reasoned that if I remained unhappy then unknowingly I would pass on my unhappiness to Khushi and that would be good for nobody.
The next day I went to office, approached my seniors, and discussed the entire situation. During the discussion, I first requested them if I could get an opportunity to work from home. I didn't want to resign. By the evening I was told that I would be allowed to work remotely from Kolkata for Pune. I was humbled by their decision and the understanding of the managers.
The bottom line is that owing to my company’s generosity and understanding and my work dedication, I am working remotely from Kolkata for Pune, to become their first employee whose on-desk job got transformed into a ‘work from home opportunity’.
Another factor that helped me in my professional journey was my hubby’s previous employer, Extentia Info. Technology, Pune, that has their own creche facility for employees’ benefit. They too showed their understanding and extended their help by allowing Khushi to continue going to their creche in spite the fact that my hubby was not their employee then.
That one and a half month when I stayed back in Pune while my hubby relocated, was a real adventure for me. With no relatives nearby, I had to manage both office and home while my toddler acted like my shadow. I feared, I cried at times but stayed determined.
Every single moment I realized how difficult and challenging is the role of a single parent. Hence, I express my gratitude towards all single parents by choice or circumstances. It's difficult, extremely difficult.
I must admit that ‘work from home’ is not an easy task. Whether I am working at an office desk or from home, being a working mom, I have to balance both. To create a balance, you need a strict schedule, share your chores, take advantage of technology, include some ‘me time’ and daily exercise. As a mother, you need to spend time with your kid and last but not the least, find your spouse time, otherwise he would end up feeling like an alien! The ‘me time’ might sound selfish to many but believe me, a ‘me time’ of either 10 to 30 minutes will make you more balanced and fulfilled as well as less resentful of all the sacrifices you have to make.
Amidst all this, I do find some playtime with my daughter but the irony is that my 3-year-old keeps reminding me, “Do your work; let me do mine”, that is, I must do my writing on the computer and she is allowed to play her casio, watch Youtube educational channels and create a mess. Since Khushi was 1 month-old I scheduled her sleep and eating time and hence, feel relieved and rewarded now.
I’m a mom without a babysitter, working remotely, an author at multiple platforms and have some plans on extending my contribution towards women empowerment very soon.