Wednesday, May 6, 2009

For Mothers Day--> By My Mom!

My mom has been an excellent mother. She has always encouraged me to pursue my dream of being a writer. Wonder why? My mom is a writer too! She has just started a blog and wrote this great piece so here it is... enjoy!
10 Things We Did for our Daughters
Last year in Junior League I noticed some members were using all three of there names. I haven't used my maiden name since I moved to Miami in 1995. Until then I used my maiden name exclusively, especially at work. This little epiphany and the Hillary Clinton campaign from President got me thinking......things I and my friend did for their daughters, that they don't even know. So in the word of Rodgers/Hammerstein, lets start at the very beginning a very good place to start.
In the Fall of 1974 I arrived at Baylor University in Waco, Texas. My roommates, who I had know since elementary school, were excited to begin our lives as women of the world. Kay was a business major, Cynthia a journalism major and I was a home ec major--liberating for sure. Baylor was still living in the 60's. Not only were there girls and boys dorms as there still are today, but until the Fall 1974 there were guy and girl approved apartment complex. These were made known by huge signs that said Women Approved Apartment Complex. How rapist inviting. But after Title IX passed a world of changes came to Baylor for women and this didn't include just sports. If curfew was at the women's dorm they had to be at the men's and it hadn't been. Thus curfew became 2:00 everywhere. This seems like such a duh thing but it was a huge deal to us. Also that was the last semester you had to wear PE uniforms, you bought at the bookstore, to PE. After a year in Home Ec, which I still love, I started taking journalism/PR classes. My dream job was to write for Southern Living. Later I found out it was in Birmingham, Alabama. This did not fit with my planned Liberated Women lifestyle. This was way before Carrie Bradshaw and Sex in the City existed. So upon graduation I hit the big city of Houston to work in Public Relations for Hermann Hospital.
This brings me to Point 1. Taking a job that was not a traditional women's job.
Even though I had a teaching degree I never planned to teach home ec. I wanted a job where I could expanded my horizons. I wanted to be all we could be. The one thing I would not stoop too was being a secretary. I could have made more money working as a secretary at Exxon (double my salary) than I did working at an entry level pr job. Friends took jobs with newspapers, hospital, went to medical school and I have one friend who was a geologist and worked in a mine in New Mexico. Other friends were teacher and nurses which was fine. I wanted everyone to have the job they wanted to have. At Hermann I met several incredible friends who wanted similar things for their life. From Hermann I went to work in PR for advertising agencies.
This brings me to Point 2. Equal pay for equal work.
I was pretty blessed at the Hospital there was a salary scale. No matter what your gender you got paid according to the salary grade. Not that is was all a level playing field, my co-worker and I were shocked to learn that a clean core worker (a janitorial position that cleaned the operating rooms) made double what we did. I can assure you they had not been to college. I did learn an important lesson here. It pass to be nice to those that have lower jobs than you. I will never forget when after living in Houston a little over a month my apartment in Sharpstown burned to the ground. I was never so surprised when the mail delivery (Geraldine Brooks) brought me some kitchen towels for my new apartment. Of course I had nothing. When I hit the world of advertising/pr men did make more than women and people in there late twenties made lots more money than those of us out of college for a couple of years. As I grew older I made more money and made even more after I was married.
Point 3. Went to other women who were professionals.
At the time I graduated from college there were very few women in medical and dental schools. One of my first jobs at Hermann was to give tours on Friday of students who were applying to medical school. This was in the Fall of 1978. I decided very quickly that I was going to women doctors. My ob/gyn doctor was my first. Her name was Patti Jayne Ross. She taught at UT - Houston and was the doctor who delivered my daughter. I also went to a women dentist in Houston. Later I continued this trend, picking out women dentist for my daughter as well as pediatrician. To this day 75% of my daughters doctors have been women. My cousin Amanda is now a doctor. While she did all the work in Medical School I liked to think I made it easier for her to join a practice as women doctors are now the norm and not the oddity.
Point 4 Keeping my maiden name.
I got married in 1983 and keeping my maiden name seemed like a no brainier. I worked in PR my name was my job. As friends got married some changed there name and some hyphenated there name. I did start really going by my married name until I moved to Miami in 1995. I started substitute teaching and since people knew my daughter was Mallory T, they knew me at Mrs. T. When we moved to El Paso I just kept my married name. On the other hand I have never changed my social security card and now with illegal immigration I was forced to have my drivers license last month put back in my maiden name. No longer could I have all three on my license. So I might be forced to add my married name to my social security card. Oh yes, ever by line I written has been in my maiden name. A close friend kept her maiden name to this day. However at some point in time her daughter in High School asked her to use her married name as everyone thought her parents were divorced. Yikes all things have there ups and downs.

Check out my moms blog too!
Love ya mommy
and Happy Mothers Day!

1 comment:

  1. You are a really sweet, loving daughter.