Tuesday, April 17, 2012


Kate Juniper Halverson

"Twenty-one grandchildren?" my friend gasped. "Can you even remember their names?" What a silly question! They are the result of my life's work. Let me explain.

One night 43 years ago I sat at a table in Salzburg, Austria surrounded by students. Someone asked someone else if they wanted kids and we all announced how many we wanted. I said "Twelve" at the same time a boy at the other end said "Twelve" and someone else said, "You two ought to get together." We did.

One of our first conversations was "working moms." It was a hot topic in the late 60's with women's lib and birth control offering opportunities to break traditional molds. I told Dee I wanted to be a professional mother, not a mom by default. That was what he wanted for his kids, too.

The whole Ann Romney flap has got me flapping. Stay-at-home-moms were often looked down on in my day. Some people assumed that since working moms did mom stuff, too, those of us who stayed home only did half the work they did. I won't go all defensive here (actually I just did, but I deleted those paragraphs) but I will say I worked full-time. My work was to raise seven well-adjusted, happy kids (we didn't make it to twelve) who would contribute goodness to the world.

I am totally satisfied with my career choice—
especially when I see the results!


Diane said...

I made the same choice, among much of the same flak, and have never regretted it for even one second. In fact, it's the biggest blessing of my life.

Christie said...

I'm flapping, too, over the insensitivity towards stay at home moms. I've definitely never regretted my choice, though I'm sure it might have been easier to quit some days. I'm glad I'm sticking it out.

~Kristina said...

Congratulations on the newest addition, Oma!

Susan Adcox said...

Beautiful child. Congratulations!

I think that the flap over Hilary Rosen's statement was created by operatives keen to make political hay. Taken in context, Rosen was reacting to the divide between Ann Romney's financial situation and the fiscal situation of most moms.

I was a stay-at-home mom for many years and then a working mom, and I never looked down on those who made a different choice, nor did my friends. Both paths have their rewards and their tribulations. Women understand that.