Local mothers share experiences
In honor of Mother's Day this Sunday, May 8, The Outlook is highlighting some of the amazing women in East County who are not only doing amazing work in the community, but also taking on the most important job of all — being a mom.
Jenne Glover and her husband opened Armworks Hand Therapy in 2006. Although Glover primarily leads the administrative team for the company, while her husband oversees the physical therapists and his owner, she plays a heavy role in the business.
Glover was born and raised in Damascus. After graduating from Barlow High School, she attended the University of Puget Sound before coming back to East County to start her family.
On top of working at Armworks and helping run the five clinics, Glover is also the mother of four boys. Her oldest, Davis, recently graduated from Central Washington University and is now in working to become a paramedic-firefighter.
Her next two, Jackson and Weston, both attend Barlow High School. Jackson is a senior this year and will attend Central Washington in the fall. The youngest of the four is Drake who is in seventh grade.
With four outgoing boys, co-running a flourishing business, being a staple in her church community and now going to school to receive a master's degree in Biblical studies, Glover said she really can't imagine life without any of it.
"You know, when people her I have four boys and learn about what I am doing they always look at me with wide eyes," Glover said. "I just tell them that I just love it. I love every day of parenting those four boys."
Although Glover said things were slightly more hectic when her kids were younger, juggling everything she has on her plate has still been a challenge.
"Things have been crazy since we started Armworks, so for the past 16 years it has never really stopped," Glover said. "But I have worked really hard to raise very independent young men, who are able to take care of themselves."
With tennis matches, track meets and football games to get to, Glover said there is often the pressure that mothers, and women in general, are often tasked and expected to do the impossible.
"You just can't do everything," Glover said. "I think that is something we fool ourselves, as women, that we can have it all and be it all. And that has really been the balancing act of my life."
As the transportation superintendent at the City of Gresham for 11 years, Rae Sorenson has gotten used to running around town.
Her and her team's focus is maintaining the city assets that are on the roads like signs, pavements, markings, vegetation and also works on snow day maintenance. As superintendent Sorenson is leads meetings, takes care of budgeting and other duties that keeps her on her toes.
Before Sorenson took on her role as superintendent, she started off working for the city as a utility worker. Altogether, Sorenson has been working for the City of Gresham for 27 years.
Sorenson is also, and would say more importantly, the mother of two teenage girls; Molly and Kindal. Molly is 14, just starting her first year in high school, while Kindal is still in middle school.
When Sorenson is free, she said she and the girls love to bake and work on crafts together. But the two are also extremely adventurous, with both enjoying sports and ridding their quad bikes.
With two girls who are so outgoing and experimenting with their independence, Sorenson said that there is one thing she said has helped keep some order at home as her girls have gotten older.
"I would say that I am more consistent with the rules," Sorenson said. "But even more I try to listen, here out their perspective, offer mine and challenge them to offer a solution to any problem they might be having."
Even though Sorenson was older, financially secure and had an established career when she decided to become a mother, she said there was still no escaping the fear of being a new mom. "It is a huge responsibility," Sorenson said. "I truly believe that parenting should get better after every generation. I wanted to give my kids more then I got in my childhood, but that isn't easy."
The two mothers both said that when they first became mothers, but many times those tips never really related to them. Despite that there are a few things that, through their years of being a mom, have helped them navigate through motherhood.
Sorenson said that for young moms the biggest tips she could offer is to not get overwhelmed with everyone's advice. "Everyone is full of advice and just waiting to give it to you," Sorenson said. "Try not to get to overwhelmed, and just find a style that works for you."
Another tidbit of information that Sorenson shared was finding the time to spend with your kids. "Something that have to say, even though I am not always the best of it, is to seize the moments you get to spend with your kids," Sorenson said. "You got to put down the cell-phones, don't answer the work emails, especially for working moms, those moments are so important."
Glover recommends a more philosophical take in her advice for young mothers.
"I would say, be a student of your child," Glover said. "Learn who they are, accept them and breathe courage into them so they can be everything they can be."
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