Monday, 8 March 2010

Being responsible

Yesterday was an exceptionally busy day filled with deliveries, meetings, errands and chores. It started at 5.30am and ended at 10pm. I didn't even have time to walk Rusty at night, luckily CH brought him out while I rushed YK to the mall to get some urgent photos done for his visa application to India.

The only breather I took was at a 3pm meeting with a foreign supplier in a posh hotel cafe. In between bites of cheesecake, we were both complaining about our expanding waistline.

"I have no time to exercise!" she moaned.

I was quite surprised to hear that. She's my age but married with no kids, surely she has lots of free time after work?

Apparently I'm not well aquainted with their corporate culture. She gets home from a long day of work in Hong Kong but that's when her colleagues in Europe start work. She clears emails from the Europeans only to find more streaming in from colleagues in America. By the time she's done, it's bedtime.

"Can't you attend to them the next day?" I asked.

Technically she can. Then again, it will not reflect very well on her. If her boss in Hong Kong calls for a meeting in the morning, she would be too embarrassed to appear ill prepared.

Hence she stays up till late to keep herself updated on the going-ons across their global network.

I sat there thinking that while she has no responsibility over kids and pets, she channels all her energy into work. She travels around the world to build relationship with customers, something that I have not been able to do all these years.

In my case, work and kids are equally important. My pragmatic mum always says, having kids is a responsibility. I can't agree more. We sacrifice time, sleep, money and energy (sometimes our sanity) to raise our kids (even sulky teens) because it's our responsibility, not because we're expecting any rewards in return.

Anyone who says raising kids is rewarding must be suffering from some form of amnesia.


amylamsg said...

Hang in there... they grow up quickly and then you are left with the empty nest :-)

Nick Phillips said...

I think there should be a balance. These days with me working at home, I try to limit my work time with the office hours and keep the evenings for my family. It doesn't always work out that way but I do try ...