In honor of all Quad City moms, Happy Mother’s Day! For inspiration, meet two ORA Orthopedics’ working moms and colleagues, Tonya Springer and Nataly Reyes. Juggling a career and family life is a daily balancing act many women (and their families) understand!
Read on to hear their advice for trying to do too much and why joyful chaos can be more rewarding than perfectly packed schedules.
Position: ORA Orthopedics Director of Finance
Family: Married with two children, ages 5 (Lakin) and 2 (Tenley)
Position: ORA Orthopedics Illinois Clinic Supervisor
Family: Married with two children, ages 5 (Tinley) and 2 (Emmelia “Emme”)
Q: If you could have any gift for Mother’s Day what would it be?
Nataly: If I could have ANY gift, it would be a trip to Bora Bora to stay in one of the huts on the water. If I am being realistic, it would be something made for me by the girls and maybe a day at the golf course.
Tonya: Bora Bora sounds good! If I am being realistic, a day at home is perfect and maybe dinner outside on the deck.
Q: What is the greatest challenge of trying to “do it all?”
Nataly: The greatest challenge of trying to “do it all” is the ability to prioritize and having realistic, obtainable expectations. The saying, “Don’t put off till tomorrow what you can do today,” puts things into perspective for me because I am always trying to get as much done in one day as possible. But, there are things that can wait until tomorrow — it is just a matter of prioritizing what’s important.
Tonya: LOL! The greatest of challenge of trying to do it all is the lack of sleep because you don’t want to miss a thing!
Q: Describe your fantasy day off?
Nataly: No agenda! I love days where we can pack the kids up in the car and see where the day takes us… which is usually a park filled with exploring and hiking or any outdoor activity that we can find.
Tonya: Yes NO agenda!! My best day off is when I am able to go out on the river with my family and spend the whole day swimming and relaxing.
Q: What was the biggest surprise or lesson you learned right away after becoming a working mom?
Nataly: Having to rely so much on others to make sure the day to day at home is being taken care of while I am at work. We have been extremely fortunate that my mom has had the ability to be the daily caregiver for both of the girls since they were born.
Tonya: The biggest surprise I learned was that I canNOT do it all! I have to ask for help, which is actually a very hard thing for me to do. However, I quickly learned that asking for help made me better at my job and a better mom, which is what every working mom really wants!
Q: What are your life hacks or secrets to keep juggling all the schedules?
Nataly: Between working different shifts for Quinton and me, school and school events for Tinley, coaching Tinley’s soccer team, and other things that pop up for the week, communication and a well-organized calendar is a must. I can only imagine how much more hectic things will be (in a good way) once Emme is in school and participating in extracurricular activities.
Tonya: A schedule! Ryan and I also work different shifts, so we have a calendar that we rely on to make sure we are getting everywhere we need to be with girls. We also rely on help from others when needed. It definitely takes a village!!
Q: Do you think women are too hard on themselves and each other? Why?
Nataly: Absolutely. I think women are programmed with the mentality that we can “do it all,” so when we don’t, the feeling of failure or “I could have done better” sets in.
Tonya: Yes, I definitely agree with Nataly. There are so many times when you feel like you should have done more or better in a given day. When the reality is you did your best and that is enough.
Q: What is your advice to mothers, single or married, who try to keep it all together during these amazing years?
Nataly: Work stays at work, when you are home you have to focus your time on yourself and your family and making memories. Our children will only be this young for so long so you have to cherish this time you have with them.
Tonya: Have fun! Time goes so fast and every day is a new day. If yesterday was rough, today will likely be great!