Dear millennial caregivers, CAREGIVING is your UNFAIR ADVANTAGE capitalize on it!
One of these things doesn’t belong here, and that thing was me...well sort of. I don’t know how this event ended up on my radar, but I am so glad it did. I live for fun networking opportunities that celebrate and uplift women. So naturally when the "RSVP NOW" email came across my inbox for the Made it Awards I quickly applied for tickets, plugged the event into outlook and crossed my fingers hoping I would get in. One week later I received a "you’re on the list" email yes! So this past Saturday morning I paused my caregiving responsibilities, threw on my millennial caregiver chic all-black uniform 😃 and strutted my stuff into a fabulously decorated Gary's Loft for the Made It Awards.
I did expect this event to be all women. What I didn't expect was so many pregnant women in the room paired with a seriously swagged out nursing nook. I have nothing against pregnant women or nursing nooks, but as a single childless woman walking into a room (that's not the OBGYN) filled with lots of pregnant women your internal childless single woman alarm does go off, and it's saying one of two things or maybe both:
While noshing on a delicious boxed lunch and making new friends, my new film industry friend kindly educated me on the fact that Romper(the host of the event) is a site for millennial moms! I see said the blind millennial caregiver!
So that explains all the preggers I see walking around here, got it!
Listen I don't know how I missed that "millennial mom" memo. I mean shit I have a lot going on in my life as a millennial caregiver who also juggles a career. So it's understandable that I would miss that detail and yet still ok because hey one day I might be a mom. So as far as I am concerned, I am still Winning and I'm staying!!!
Btw @Romper can we get a caregiving nook with a tv and some tea so I can stick my dad in there while attending this event next year?
I digress. Back to the event and why you should still keep reading. Even though I am not a millennial mom I know it was in "my cards" to be at this event. As cliche as it is to say this, I 100% believe that everything happens for a reason or a couple reasons.
4 reasons why I was meant to be at this event
1)Everyone has an unfair advantage
Keynote Speaker Susan Peterson's message was intended for me, and it inspired this post. If you have the opportunity to see Susan,the founder of Freshly Picked, speak seize it! Her handmade baby moccasins to riches story is inspiring, and her candid entrepreneurship advice is practical. I was mind blown when Susan explained to the audience "everyone has an unfair advantage" and how she used her unfair advantage to make her millions.
In essence, she believes it is your responsibility to know your unfair advantage and to capitalize on it. Literally when she said that I realized as a millennial caregiver, caregiving is our unfair advantage and we need to capitalize on it NOW! It is our responsibility to do this because only a millennial caregiver can recognize and create what we need to disrupt the current state of caregiving and aging.
So as hard as it is to juggle caregiving and a career, this is my plea for us to think bigger to create the change we NEED. We're the answer to our problems. We have to look at issues we are encountering as millennial caregivers, and we have push through to create the solutions.
I attend many aging & eldercare tech events where the attendees of these events are well versed in the caregiving crisis in America. Talking to people at the Made it Awards made me realize that outside of my caregiving tech bubble many people are not aware of this crisis. This made me realize I need to talk more about millennial caregiving at events that have nothing to do with the subject to raise awareness and encourage our seat at the table.
Talking about the caregiving crisis, TechUrElders, smart aging and smart caring tech resources for caregivers with attendees of this event was an excellent way for me to practice my pitch. Winning yet again!
4)Find your tribe
This was another great gem dropped by a former Googler turned mompreneur, Irene Lee, who explained that surrounding herself with other entrepreneurs who are also mothers was a great help for her. Imagine that, a tribe of millennial caregivers who are entrepreneurs supporting each other and creating amazing things! Speaking that one into existence!
This event was overflowing with tons of great connections. Everyone was netowrking and openly sharing resources/tips. It was also fascinating to see how similar the millennial mom struggle is to the millennial caregiver struggle. Essentially millennial moms and female millennial caregivers are both juggling career & caregiving in a male-dominated world. Just imagine the change we could create with events like this but for both millennial moms and millennial caregivers forging their way on the path of entrepreneurship.
Thank you Susan for my ah-ha moment and thank you Romper for such an elegant, uplifting and fun event! See you next year Made It Awards.