When mom is a journalist (and vice versa)

When mom is a journalist (and vice versa)
Fecha de publicación: 
14 March 2022
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It is difficult to establish a logical order in this matter. That is, I do not know if I am going to write about being a journalist and a mother, or vice versa. In my case, my profession came first. A few years later, the other dreamed condition: being a mother.


The news surprised me when I was in my twenties and had many projects in hand. Almost all of them had to wait and I could never return to some of them. However, at this point I have no doubt that my children and my work have grown together.


Trying to do well in both of my passions has been my constant challenge, especially when I was left alone. Journalism and me, facing life. I couldn't abandon them (neither my children nor my profession) and here we are, accompanied by lots of people who make it less difficult for us and writing the best and truest chronicle: everyday life. Sometimes surviving sometimes, but always happy.


Amanda and Javi have inevitably been characters in many stories I have written, motivation for others. They have helped me as photographers, camera boy or girl, or even editors. I owe them the original idea of more than one text and, without a doubt, they have suggested me a rich agenda of issues and approaches.


My girl and my boy have attended press conferences, CD launches, plastic arts exhibitions, interviews...That is the reality of so many colleagues on a daily basis. It is the challenge of our children while ours is to be there trying to live up to expectations. That's why, faced with the invitation to write about "what it is to be a mother and a journalist," it seems wrong to me to talk only about my truth- So I asked a couple of friends, and colleagues, whom I greatly admire...


Yirmara: "our profession makes our children to fall in love with it"


Yirmara Torres Hernández is one of the bravest women I have ever met. She currently heads the Union of Cuban Journalists (UPEC) in Matanzas and she has been, for a long time, the mother of César, a future journalist...


"In my case, I had only one child and I believe that the most difficult thing is that, since the profession of journalist is so demanding, it has no schedule. I think that children suffer a little from that. Sometimes, you have to pause your work routine a little bit during a stage. That is what I did until my child started school. I paused further studies, the possibility of taking advantage of opportunities that opened up to me. I paused them because I was very young and I am from Colón, but I lived in the city of Matanzas, and I had no family support there. I decided that he was my top priority, to take care of him. So I tried to be as comfortable as possible. Not all journalists do what I had to do. But I did it my way…


"I think ours is a profession that makes children fall in love with it. I've seen it a lot and it happened to me too, because my son is going to study journalism and I think it has to do with that, with having been linked to what the life of a journalist is on daily basis, and having been related to my friends, most of whom are journalists…


"I remember that when my boy was a kid, he just started to write down baseball stats because he wanted to be a sports journalist. Later, I wrote a daily program and he began to make the thematic plans, that is, he played to organize the topics of the whole month. At the age of 12, he asked me to create a blog account for him and well, since then, he writes about sports and other stuff. Nowadays, he states he is an influencer, youtuber…so that is a profession that has some impact on our children. It is easy for them to lean towards it. They see how hard we work, but they also see how pleasant it is. It is catchy, and make you fall in love with it.”


Indira Román: "You have to be more honest with yourself, more creative"


We wait for Indira every day in the Culture TV News and we are always grateful for her materials for the information system. She is a young and intense journalist mom:


"For me, the main challenge has been the time factor since my son was born. Time that I need to devote to his education, to pamper him, to spend time with him, to enjoy him and, on the other hand, time to devote myself to my professional, and as a woman.


"You experience the dilemma on how to share yourself, aiming at trying to be an excellent professional, succeed in pursuing your goals, be it a Master's degree, another career, a new project and at the same time be creative, promote innovative initiatives, do some researches, read, then you need these two things to converge: the time to be a mother and the time to be a journalist, a woman.


"I think this cannot be unrelated. You have to put things on a scale and find the balance. I have achieved it through organization. The more organized you get, the more successful you will be.


"On the other hand, there is the challenge of doing things right, because you have a person who is following our legacy, to whom you are instilling values and you need to lead by example. So the way of doing journalism definitely changes when you have children. At least that's what has happened to me. You have honest with yourself, more creative. You look for a way to make what you're doing useful, that it matters, make you proud, and work for what it is worthy.


"Since Ale was born, I rather work on subjects that contribute to family, that show what is good, useful... For example, when I did the series for the 500 anniversary of Havana, I thought a lot about my son and said: How can I show my son the good things his hometown has, where he was born? How can I tell him all that has happened here? I started there, thinking about how I want to show it to my son. The same occurs with other children. There are many other subjects that come to your mind for that very reason of wanting to offer them another world, of wanting to offer them something more.


"My son is still a little kid and although it is common for him to be at home and see me on television, sometimes he tells me "oh, I have two moms, if you are here how can you be on television," but it is fantastic for me that once he grows up, he will be proud of the journalist that I am, not only of the good a mother I can be to him. I hope he has that concept and I am trying everything, but I also want him to be proud of his journalist mother, of what I have achieved, of the sacrifices that we, the mothers, sometimes make and, somehow, the legacy that one, little by little, leaves behind."


Translated by Sergio A. Paneque Díaz / CubaSí Translation Staff

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