Three weekends out of four I’ve been away from home. This is part accident. Part on purpose. Soon I will be gone for 12 days. Which is about three times as long as I’ve ever been away from them. This way they can get used to the fact that I’m away for periods of time and then I come back. But mostly, it’s practice for me, not for them. There’s a safety zone in coming down to Sydney for three nights because I can always drive back. And next time I won’t be able to drive back. So I’m practicing being without them. And as much as I love the time alone, I ache for them too. One of the perils of motherhood I suppose. You are never alone. The gaping hole where your children are supposed to be keeps you company when they are not there. Which really, I like. I like the constant connection, even if it hurts some of the time.
I learnt a lot at the Women, Work and Management Conference. Even though the primary focus is on women with careers, as opposed to one woman operations like mine.
I learn that Queenslander’s are damn lucky to have Senator Claire Moore as their Senator. Damn lucky. I learnt that you don’t have to be outgoing and blowing your own trumpet to be powerful. You can be yourself instead. I learnt that most women find that their toughest critics and harshest bosses are other women. I learnt that mentorship is something that a lot of companies do, but I think individuals should take it up as well. I learnt that the path to achieve a goal is by measuring yourself against yourself. I learnt that even General Managers with the Commonwealth Bank become so enamoured with their baby that they can’t even conceive of going back to work. I learnt that in making new connections with people you should never ask someone what they do. EVER. I learnt that strengths aren’t always what you think they are. I learnt that even disaster management professionals are aware of the emerging importance of social media. I learnt that the difference between influence and manipulation is wafer-thin. I learnt that one of the most inspiring speakers about women and leadership was in fact an Air Commodore in the Air Force. And I learnt that the most scary thing you will hear about is unconscious bias.
And I miss baby smell. This isn’t a recent photo. Just the only one I have on my iPad.
And I missed my snuggly googy bear. Also not a recent photo. This is the first time I’ve seen how using the ipad as opposed to a computer would actually work.
And I learnt that the practicing is going pretty well.
‘Macquarie University’s 24th annual Women, Management and Work Conference took place on 12-13 July 2012 in Sydney. If you would like to find out more information please visit the website: http://bit.ly/WMWC12’