Kalokagathia

Congressional Babies!

I am not the best when it comes to keeping up with news and politics - granted, I have become more informed and inquisitive as I get older - but I don't know the ins and outs of Washington and I certainly don't keep up with news on the players - but this article about Rep. Cathy McMorris Rodgers caught my attention and I thought I would mention it because, well, I thought it was a nice piece. McMorris Rodgers will be the 5th woman to give birth while serving a term in Congress - this number was higher than I anticipated. A sad reflection on my expectations I suppose. One of the previous women to accomplish the feat was Susan Molinari who is quoted as saying, "Being pregnant and being in Congress is like being pregnant and working any other job, it's just a more public pregnancy" - a statement I greatly admire. It reflects perspective and acknowledges (in my mind's reading anyhow) that many women do work while pregnant - it is not an easy task, but it is not made novel by the fact that we don't always see women in this particular sect of the media who are pregnant and balancing a career outside of show business (really, do we need to read another interview with a star who seems to think she is the first woman on the planet to ever have a baby?). There were a couple of other points that I liked about the article - the best being mention of potentially bring the baby to the office. I think that if you can bring your child to the office without creating a nuisance for your colleagues, then this might be a good thing. I seem to be lacking in any mothering instinct as of yet and I will be the first to get annoyed and frusterated when a parent thinks that their immunity to whining and crying is spread across everyone within hearing distance - but if you can keep disruption to a minimum and if you know when it is time to simply call it a day - well perhaps there is a balance that can be struck which enables a woman (and hell, any man that wants to as well) to find a compromise. I don't know how realistic that may be in practice - but if you have nice big offices with soundproof walls, all the better! The other thing I liked in the article was Rep. McMorris Rodgers' statement, "Also, I have a spouse... He's excited about being a caregiver." Thank you! In a world where we often see pregnancy and children as only affecting women, it is nice to hear a strong female figure put that out there. While there are certain aspects of pregnancy and child-rearing that can only be accomplished by a female, there is an important role for the partner, spouse, or really any support system the mother has in place. The more help they can give, the better chances the mother has at truly being able to choose whether she wants to return to work or not. There is a lot to be said for having the choice.

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