Facebook COO Sheryl Sandberg is telling young women to Lean In to corporate America, to “take a seat at the table,” “join the conversation.” She worries that we have put ourselves on the ‘mommy track,’ often before we’re even dating. She posits that a lack of confidence and ambition has led to the shortage of women in the top tiers of corporations.
Too late for me, Sheryl. I didn’t lean in. I often chose to, as USAToday columnist Lionel Beehner writes, “sit back, listen and maybe even learn something.” I did. I learned a lot. I was met with many opportunities I didn’t fully explore, due to a lack of confidence and ambition, as well as a strong desire to be there for my children. I didn’t outsource mothering. I’m fine with the decision in that I, along with my husband, raised wonderful sons, kind and vital people. Somewhat ironically, they are confident and ambitious. One with a professional career, the other on his way. Both happily married. One, who is a new father, is an interested and involved parent.
I’m a successful parent. Success elsewhere, not so much. Just as Sheryl said in her O interview: “We’re not using the full talents of our population.” I leaned back so far I’m horizontal. Please don’t shovel any dirt on me.
Causes Jodi Thompson Supports
Unitarian Universalist Service Committee