Compiled by two Australian mums to help support other parents, Working Mums: Stories by real women on how they manage children, work and life is a collection of empowering stories from Australian mothers. The book's primary aim is to help working mums feel less alone in their challenges to juggle work, children and daily life. Readers might also be inspired to try new careers.
Some of the contributors are public figures (singer Missy Higgins, Olympian Alisa Camplin, blogger and social commentator Annie Nolan, and radio host and comedian Georgina McEnroe). Other contributors work in fields including sport, music, professional services, early childhood education, beauty, academia, business and politics.
The overall tone is reflective, conversational, humourous and honest. Contributors sometimes open up about difficult experiences such as the loss of a child or close relationship. Such stories are, however, interspersed with humorous anecdotes and observations. Other themes include the challenges of adjusting to their new roles, discrimination in the workplace, and guilt around their choices.
The stories are also optimistic, with the challenges themselves sometimes catalysts to positive personal or professional growth. Despite how different the contributors' working lives look, they face many of the same challenges. Working Mums: Stories by real women on how they manage children, work and life is also a great resource for dads, partners, carers, grandparents, and parents-to-be.
Danielle and Louise met while in a cafe in beachside Altona, Melbourne. They bonded over their lack of sleep and love of coffee. (Their children are still terrible sleepers.) Danielle has recently moved with her family to Hobart and writes with Louise over email and Skype, in between naps and needy and darling children. They have both always dreamed of writing a book and helping other parents with it.
Contributors to Working Mums include:
Missy Higgins, singer and songwriter
Georgina McEncroe, founder of Australia’s first all-female rideshare Shebah, radio host and comedian
Annie Nolan, social commentator, author of the popular ‘Uncanny Annie’ blog, and wife of AFL Western Bulldogs premiership player Liam Picken
Alisa Camplin, Winter Olympic champion
Simone McLaughlin, founder of JobsShared
Ella Haddad, Labor Candidate in Hobart
Kristy Vallely, founder of the immensely popular ‘The Imperfect Mum’ online community
Chloe Grant, early childhood educator whose letter to a senator went viral
Carly and Alee, QLD same-sex IVF couple