Submitted by Jim Haselmaier
When our first child was about six months old and we were in the throes of being new parents, I started feeling weird. I didn't exactly feel sick, it was more like I was feeling really stressed out and anxious. I was pretty worried that there was something seriously wrong, so I went to see a doctor.
Based on the doctor's questions, it became apparent that my "illness" was stress; we had a new baby and my job was intense. The doctor also helped me recognize that my coffee consumption had gone way up. His suggested remedy: Cut down on the coffee; Try to get more sleep; And take a stress management class.
So a couple of weeks later, I'm in a large conference room at the local hospital attending my first stress management class. As I'm contemplating the info the instructor is sharing, the phone on the wall rings. (There were no cell phones back then.) The instructor stops instructing the class, answers the phone, and the room quiets as everyone listens to her end of the conversation. Then she turns to the class and asks, "Is Jim Haselmaier here?" I raised my hand. She says "Your wife and daughter are in the emergency room downstairs."
Submitted by Kathleen Helbling
It's interesting and encouraging to read these stories about working parents. I was a teacher and have been retired for a while now. How far things have come since my own mother and father were making choices about their careers and family.
After World War II, it was no longer socially acceptable for women to have careers of their own. My mom had a degree in nursing and amazing business skills, but did not pursue a career; instead she took care of our home and us children. She did take care of the family finances, but people at church told her that she was reducing her husband (my dad) by doing that. Interestingly, he didn't want to manage the finances, and in fact, didn't do it very well.