Once you have children, you will never go back to the old way of doing things, but I have found that I've been able to regain more of my old life than I'd thought possible. I'd been freelancing for a long time before I became a mother, so I was used to setting my own hours. I've always worked hardest and fastest in the first part of the day. That kind of rhythm has meant that I've been able to leave my work and pick up my children from school without any guilt. I always liked to travel for a story and I still do. The brief trips to see the women profiled here (usually about two days at a time) have been welcome breaks from my family routine. And it's been nice to tell my daughters that I'm going to work as I pack a suitcase, not a gym bag.
It is so hard to give someone confidence. When Harvard president Drew Faust was a girl, her mother constantly told her, "It's a man's world, sweetie, and the sooner you learn that, the better off you'll be." Change just one tiny part of that sentence and it becomes an empowering mantra for a comeback: "It's your world, sweetie, and the sooner you learn that, the better off you'll be."