“I thought that if I wanted to raise a family, I couldn’t be a working mom.”


Brittany has always been driven by her career, she explains. During college in West Palm Beach, she ran multiple student and community activities. Then she moved to Chicago and worked in marketing and events at a publishing company and a tourism group. By age 25, her professional achievements were mounting, fueling her growing ambition.

“I was working 60-hour weeks in a big city, and it never felt like work,” she says, laughing knowingly at her younger self. “I thought I was invincible.”

And then, she was contacted by a recruiter. Did she want to lead local community programs for a new Microsoft retail store in Miami? It was the career move she’d been waiting for.

Three weeks later, Brittany received the job offer, but then her life took a twist.

She found out that she was pregnant—and was immediately overcome with doubt and ambiguity.

“I thought that if I wanted to raise a family, I couldn’t be a working mom,” she says, her cheery voice turning suddenly serious.

The decision felt especially fraught for her, given the culture in which she was raised.

“My dad’s side is Cuban, and my mom’s side is Puerto Rican. People from cultures centered on family like mine often particularly struggle with the guilt from wanting both,” she explains.

She was tortured with questions: “Will I get to spend enough time with my kids? Will I be able to devote enough energy to my clients? My baby will only be little for a short time. . . . If I take a break from work, will I be able to pick up where I left off?”

Even though she was uncertain and scared, she had a village around her and decided to make the leap. She took the position as a community development specialist with Microsoft and helped open the first Microsoft retail store in the Miami area.

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