Sarah Jessica Parker is the kind of mom you are instantly drawn to--this holds true in person and on film. This week I got to sit down with one of my favorite NYC celeb moms to talk about balance--or the lack there of--and try to answer the question "How do we all pull off this dance of balancing work and family."
The reason I got this opportunity to swap war stories with one of the most bankable and likable actresses around was a new movie called "I Don't Know How She Does It." Let's start with "THE LIST" the movie kicks off with Kate (SJP's character) going over the mental list we all keep in our heads about what we have to do to keep the family afloat. Kate and her husband have two jobs that contribute to the household finances, yet Kate's the one who makes sure birthdays are executed with flair, bake sale items are delivered, and kids are outfitted in proper-fitting shoes--you know the day to day essentials we all deal with.
Things heat up when both Kate and her hubby land big work assignments. No one is able to "cover" the other and things fall apart quickly. We'll all been there over-committed and understaffed on the home front. I for one winced at the reality of this Hollywood tale--it hits VERY close to home. And that is why this movie matters and should be seen. It's all about priorities and juggling. While you may not come away with answers, you'll see the beauty in the story of a family trying to make it work in challenging times.
SJP delivers a solid performance. I don't think it was a stretch for her to pull off the role of loving mom--the acting came in when she had to be frazzled (she looks impeccable in real life). What a cast she got to work with--two of the yummiest actors around Greg Kinnear, Pierce Bronsnan and a whole lot of great supporting ladies.
SAHMs might not appreciate the stereotypes (self-centered, gym rats)--but I hope they can laugh at the stereotype. Working women aren't taken off the hook either. I love the role of Momo the finance automoton.
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After the screening the fab Miss Sarah Jessica arrived and looked flawless. The moms of MomsAndTheCity gathered a group of bloggers and journalists to have a dialog about the movie and what it means to be a working mom. Sarah Jessica was joined by the author of the original (I Don't Know How She Does It) book, Allison Pearson.
SJP kicked off the conversation stating she works because she is "Excited and challenged by the possibilities outside my home." I asked SJP if she every has to "wing it" as I often have to do because I'm juggling so many things with work and family. She admits that things get harried at times when husband Matthew Broderick and she take jobs at the same time, but that they have a great support system with hired help to make "the special symphony" that is their home work.
Allison (the British author) was a hoot. And I was pleased to see a lot of the language of the original book has been preserved in the film. Her goal was to get across how moms carry an "extraordinary document" or the operating manual of a family inside our heads. She impressed upon us all how incredible our work at home is comparing managing a family to running a small country.
Moms in the gathering spoke of feeling jealous of their Stay At Home Friends and wondered if it was possible t truly stay connected to women living such a different existence. SJP shared that she, "covets her friends that don't work outside the house. These moms always know what's going on." Oh and once last tidbit from the talk, SJP's secret obsession--a show called House Hunters International.
For more about the movie visit http://howshedoesitmovie.com/ See the movie today (Sept. 16 is the release date), and get ready to feel tears, guilt and joy knowing that we aren't in this alone. It'll be sure to spark conversations at your next school potluck dinner I promise. This movie is a great plea for more flexibility in the work force in flexibility in our opinions of what a "good mom" looks like.
Momtrends was not paid for this post. We did get a swag bag from the event sponsor American Express.