I found this interesting interview with Katherine Ellison, the author of a new book titled “The Mommy Brain: How Motherhood Makes Us Smarter.” I’ve yet to read the book (oh right, I’ve to buy it first! :)), but it surely got me intrigued. Me, smarter? Now that’s something you don’t hear everyday.
When I became a mom, I wasn’t so much concerned about being smarter than I was about being less productive at work. I knew that I had to make sacrifices as I try to juggle career and parenting. Before I had Aya, I used to stay as long as my colleagues at work. When Aya was born, I had to rush home earlier than everyone else. But since I know that I had to go home earlier, I found myself carefully planning in advance how exactly I will spend the day so that I will be able to maximize my time at work. The result is that my efficiency at work has also drastically improved. Gone are the idle moments spent at the PC surfing the web, taking 15-30 minutes of coffee breaks, or friendly chitchats with friends. I got smarter in the sense that I learned how to manage my time more efficiently. I may not be 100% objective here, but the way I look at it, in terms of productivity, I certainly wasn’t performing any worse than when I didn’t have a baby to look after!
When Aya was born, I felt as helpless and inexperienced as any first-time mother – but I learned fast. There is a little life depending on me and if I didn’t smart up, she will suffer the consequences. So yes, I agree, motherhood does make you smarter. Surprisingly, we find ways to cope with the challenges and how we can best care for our children. We learn and grow.
There is another important thing that I learned from motherhood: setting your priorities straight. I can always be replaced by someone else at work, but I will always be Mom to my daughter.
To the mothers out there – how did having a baby change your lives? Do you think you’ve become smarter because of it?