The Working Mother's Survival Guide

What every working mother needs is a fairy godmother -- someone who will arrive on the scene, wave her magic wand and make all the work and family-related chaos disappear. Got a mountain of laundry taking over your room? No problem! Your fairy godmother can take care of that with a simple flick of her wrist. Can't remember the last time you were on top of your to-do list at work? Don't sweat it. Your fairy godmother knows how to operate the photocopier and the fax machine!

I hate to break your heart, but I've got some bad news for you. As you've no doubt noticed by now, the waiting list for fairy godmothers stretches around the globe! So since your chances of watching your to-do list go up in a puff of smoke are pretty much next to zilch, you're going to have to settle for the next best thing: a recipe for sanity.

The recipe for sanity that I'm serving up has only six ingredients, but some of them are in chronically short supply (you'll get the picture as we walk through the list!):

A supportive employer

One of the most important ingredients in the recipe for sanity is a supportive boss. You'll be far less likely to hit the panic button when your toddler throws up in the car on the way to day care if you know that your boss won't hassle you about needing time off work. Unfortunately, there are still a fair number of dinosaurs roaming the executive suites of corporate America, so if you've got an enlightened employer who understands that it isn't easy to juggle work and family commitments, consider yourself blessed. (Better yet, send flowers! He or she deserves them.)

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