My heart goes out to Alpha Daughter: her daughter is in tears. There's one more week before school starts and my granddaughter just learned that she has to go to camp that week. Dad's work is starting up again; so is Mom's. After a long vacation, it's back to the real world. But now my granddaughter is sobbing in the back seat of the car and my daughter is wrestling with her real-world obligations and that awful feeling that her career is forcing her daughter to do something she does not want to do.
Now my daughter is offering her daughter some "sweeteners"--something to make the mandate easier to bear. She could pick her up early; they could Skype us every night. My granddaughter isn't buying any of it. For now, she's inconsolable.
"The women who have managed to be both mothers and top professionals are superhuman, rich, or self-employed."
At the airport, Paterfamilias hugs his granddaughter goodbye and tells her that her mom needs her help and she should do what she has to do to make things easier for her mom. I can't bring myself to say anything such thing--though "easier" is what I wish for my daughter. That and a painless way to cut herself in half.