Genuine Hero

Making it through the tough times, step by step

So things have been… Hectic lately. Back-to-school is an awesome time for many moms and dads but it’s been a little insane. Parents, you get it—registrations, new schedules, new teachers, new daily routine, lots of homework. I remind myself not to complain or feel underwater with all of it, but I must say, it’s not easy.

I actually cried to my fiancée the other day after my boss called and asked “Where are you?” on a day I thought I had requested for vacation. I took the day (the last one I have) to train the new nanny, but I’m so frazzled, I requested the wrong day! Oy! I asked Marc, “How do other working parents do it? I feel overwhelmed.”

His response? “They all struggle.”

Enter: one of my oldest and dearest friends, Shoshana, who lives halfway across the country and whom I haven’t seen in years. She’s coming to town and wants to have dinner. Of course—but I only have an hour, since the President is speaking and I need to be on the air early.

We meet and have a wonderful reunion. True friends always pick up exactly where they leave off, with no awkwardness. She updates me—her kids are four, two, and 11 months (oy!). She travels weekly for her high-powered corporate job, she’s nurturing her cousin who may be anorexic, and she’s putting her husband thorough his second masters program. Wow. I’m exhausted just listening about her life. She is a superstar. I am secretly envious that she has abdicated the responsibility of the kids’ nutrition over to the nanny. Of course she monitors, but her ability to delegate like a true leader is something I wish I could emulate better. We eat, laugh, she meets Marc, and it’s time to go.

As I’m leaving her, she turns to me in a private moment and says, “I have 10 years sobriety last week.”

I’m in awe. Her words took me back 10 years to us sitting on the floor of my firstborns’ nursery, her confessing that she had a problem with alcohol and had started treatment. I was stunned, proud, and humbled at the time. Exactly how I felt looking at her now, 10 years later. She is a superstar, ten times over.

Yes, my friends, we all struggle, some more than others.

Shoshi, you are my hero. I am blessed to have you, an incredible woman in my life as a role model (even if you are younger than me!). You should be very proud, at least half as proud as I am of you.

We all struggle, and that’s ok. One day at a time my friends, one day at a time.