Cassie Clark.
epic shit.
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Nine months of pure bliss. The delicate balancing act.

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These last 9 months have been pure bliss. The pure joy I feel with my daughter is almost too much to bear. I feel like my heart might explode every time she discovers or does something new. She is becoming her own unique person and I feel a tremendous responsibility to set a good example for her and allow her to continue to develop in a safe space.

Becoming a mother has been a lifelong dream of mine but so has the dream of building a career for myself and becoming a designer. When I became pregnant I did not receive a lot of advice pertaining to what the 4th trimester might look like. I just received a lot of questions regarding if I intended to work after the baby was born.

Nothing could really prepare us for the challenge of balancing both right out of the gate. Of course JR and I would have crazy work assignments just after the baby was born when I returned to work. That is just how life works.

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Que the insanity of our jobs- and the challenge of raising a child-

 

Balancing a career and a family is a challenge.  For any working mother I think the world can be cruel with judgement and non-support. People question your commitment level to your children if you choose to keep working.  I for one grew up with a working mother so I knew and experienced first hand the positive and the negative aspects.

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Working is so engrained in me I can’t imagine not working and not designing. Having Auden has actually made me a more efficient designer. While I am at work I squeeze the most out my time as I possibly can. I have been able to manage my time more efficiently and make decisions faster.

Not having a typical 9-5 in the exhibit world is something that I can never fully explain to someone who has never experienced the pure insanity of this field. I never know what the day may hold once I walk into work- and so I have learned to just roll with it rather than trying to control and structure my days perfectly.

There are late nights and weekends

So how do I balance? I try to leave work by 5 to pick up my daughter from day care and then we head home. From 5 to whenever Auden decides to fall asleep I do not work. That was a boundary that I am not willing to compromise on. 5-8 is family time wether that means going to the park with our dog Kenzie, making dinner, or playing; JR and I are fully engaged with our daughter because the time together during the work week is so precious.

If work needs to be done I begin it as soon as Auden asleep. Is this perfect? No. Does it work? Kinda. Some days are better than others but overall we seem to be managing it okay.

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Are we now controlled by more chaos? Yes.

There are a few things that I do every week to help aid in the chaos which I will be sharing next week.

Am I the perfect mom? No. But what the hell - I am giving it my all. 

We are not really sleeping – I feel more exhausted than I was in the last year of my senior year of college where I had a major and a minor, 24 credits, and an internship. Yep, definitely more tired now. Despite all of the challenges, we have a great time navigating through this world together just the three of us.

To the women who are wondering if you can have both have a family and a career- HELL YES YOU CAN! I never thought I had to choose one because I wanted both and knew that I could do both despite people telling me otherwise. In addition, it helps tremendously to have a supportive partner in crime. It also helps that I am really stubborn. I wanted to start a real conversation and not sugar coat anything about the quest for balance from a real mom's perspective who is trying to keep all the balls in the air.

As crazy as this all is, I wouldn’t trade any of this for the world!

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Incredible photography by the beautiful Jessica Lynn Perry- Thank you for capturing our little family! https://jessicalynnperry.pixieset.com/