Guest Opinion | Shirlee Smith: Robinson-Baisley and the “Balancing ACT”

Published : Monday, October 28, 2019 | 4:42 AM

In your recent article regarding Jacque Robinson-Baisley’s possible run for mayor of Pasadena, you reported that an organization that had endorsed her previous run for the office now asked in an interview how she planned to balance everything; job, marriage, motherhood, campaign and, if elected, serving as mayor.

The balancing act is what we mothers do on a daily basis. That’s who we are. To ask such a question of balance highlights our society’s ignorance when it comes to the awesome number of responsibilities mothers perform taking care of a home, children, a career, a significant other and community involvement.

Working Moms, an online publication, reports that we mothers work a 98-hour week. That’s 14 hours a day seven days a week.  The article further says our days begin at 6:30 a.m. and end somewhere around 8:30 p.m.

Robinson-Baisley is on target when she said, in your interview with her,  that she does not think men get questioned about how they will do it all; such as who is going to take care of their child while they are involved with civic responsibilities.

Can she do it all?

The naysayers will say no and many of them will throw in the guilt trip of Robinson-Baisley supposedly not being able to have enough time for her 2-year-old daughter.

Far too many mothers forsake the dreams they have, those beyond motherhood, because they get wrapped into what society says we were put on Earth to do.

I’m a yes-sayer, believing the power of motherhood coupled with the power of determination means winning the race no matter the course.

Robinson-Baisley hasn’t, as yet, declared her candidacy. I’m hoping she’ll use the naysayers and questioners as motivational tools to fuel a “A Mom Can Do It All” campaign.


Shirlee Smith

Parent Advisor/Consultant/AdvocateKCET/ Union Bank Local Hero Honoree

Smith is a parent advocate and former local newspaper opinion columnist. At the age of 30, she was recruited by UCLA and graduated as Departmental Scholar in Sociology, as a single parent of five children, with the youngest going to campus with her in a stroller.

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