This Mom's Zoom Setup Illustrates Every Parent Trying to Work from Home
Make it work, Mom.
Working from home when you have kids around is not an easy task. Sometimes–actually most of the times–we have to be creative and do some juggling to get through the day. So, when parents lift the veil on what is really happening at home, we love them for it.
Gretchen Goldman, Ph.D. is a scientist and a mom who recently used Zoom to be part of a television interview with CNN. While TV viewers only saw a well-spoken and informed professional, it’s what was going on behind the scenes that has us applauding.
On her Twitter, Goldman posted two pictures side by side and captioned them: “Just so I'm being honest.”
One photo was a screenshot from the shoulders up–business as usual. The second, however, showed what was really happening around her. From toys cluttering the room but strategically moved out of view, to a kitchen chair propped on top of a coffee table to give Goldman’s laptop the perfect eye-level height, this was clearly a mom who was making it work. Finally, Goldman showed off what we all know to be true when we are on video calls–if they can’t see your pants, why bother?
It was Goldman’s husband who snapped the now viral behind-the-scenes picture of his wife working amid the chaos of having two toddlers at home. "There's a Thomas the Train Engine toy that's there, there's a box of balls and other debris that's on the floor of my house," Goldman told NPR, adding that while she is grateful to work from home, she, like all of us, finds it exhausting and sometimes impossible.
"It's resonating with people," she said. "Parents are being put in an impossible situation now, working from home while managing the emotional and physical safety of their children—and it's laughably infeasible to do that."
Goldman said she doesn’t expect her workspace to look different anytime soon and ours probably won’t either. "It is absolutely exhausting to both work and care for children all day. You feel like you’re failing at both and I've just really been amazed to see how many people really feel this struggle."
So, here’s to moms who hold it together amid the chaos. We raise a cup of cold coffee to you and we promise not to judge your messy house if you’ll do the same for us.