Bringing children into this world and raising them to be decent people is one of the hardest roles a person can take on. It becomes even harder when you are a working parent, having to balance every day the responsibilities towards your kids and your career. So it’s no surprise that, sometimes, hard decisions have to be made.
When Kristen Hewitt spoke publicly about an unusual parenting choice she recently made, she knew some people would disagree with her. But she wasn’t prepared for the backlash that she would receive. It just goes to show that everyone has strong opinions about parenthood, and what’s right for one family may not be right for another.
Kristen is a 41-year-old working mother. She’s a two-time Emmy-winning reporter, having covered the Miami Heat for Fox Sports for over a decade. On top of that, she is a blogger and an entrepreneur. Kristen’s career is extremely important to her. But when she became a mother, she had to make some changes.
As a reporter for the Heat, Kristen’s job was to cover the team’s home and away games — which meant traveling around the country. But when she decided to have a family, she chose to work part-time and cover the home games only. Without the benefit of paid maternity leave, she was back on the basketball court three weeks after giving birth to her daughter Lila. Now, eight years later, she’s making it work.
Kristen’s daughters are now eight and five years old. She continues to cover the Heat’s home games and her blog has blossomed into a small media empire, with Kristen now consulting for other bloggers wanting to build their businesses. But as her children grow, so do her responsibilities as a mother. And though she has a supportive husband, sometimes the burden falls all on her.
Last December, Kristen was having a rough time. She had just gotten through Thanksgiving weekend, with all the work that it entailed. The next week, her husband went on a business trip, leaving her to take care of the children by herself. On top of that, she was having health issues. She was reaching a tipping point.
That day, Lila had an honor roll ceremony at school. But Kristen decided to tell her she wasn’t going to attend. Her daughter didn’t mind too much since her father and grandmother would be there instead. “She understood, gave me a hug, and thanked me for all I do for her,” Kristen wrote on a Facebook post. But it turned out it wasn’t Lila that she had to worry about.