Staff Interviews – Roxana Amaral, District Partnerships Manager

March is Women’s History Month as well as National Working Mom’s Day. We asked several of our Sound Discipline colleagues to share the stories of their experiences as working moms. Thank you Roxana for sharing your story!


Why do you work in education and supporting educators? 

Being an educator before being a mom has been a gift because of all the early childhood development wisdom I learned that helped prepare me to be a parent. I can’t imagine being a parent and not an educator because it’s so much to come at you, and being an educator is professional prep for working with children. 


What’s it like being a working mom of littles? 

It’s exhausting. It’s a lot of juggling, being creative, figuring out how to make things work. Creative problem solving. Takes up a lot of energy. AND when you have a system, structure and routine in place, it makes a world of difference. As your kids start getting out of the toddler years, it gets easier because you can start holding them responsible for their own lives, journeys and have more conversations about what we can do as a family to help each other out 

I do get to see the light at the end of the tunnel because my kids are able to get themselves dressed now. I can say “what do you need to do to be ready for school” and she knows what to do and can get her stuff. The routines help this a lot too because of the predictability and managing time. 

Early bedtime is very important too because then I can do work in the evening. I was a mom from 5-8 yesterday and then did three more hours of my job and then went to bed and started up again. It’s a lot of juggling. It’s not negative. It’s just a lot of work. 


How has Sound Discipline supported you to show up in both the roles of being a mom and an employee?

Giving grace when I need time to be able to be with my kids. Little kids get sick, and that’s the reality and so even though you think you have everything all lined up and you can be at a certain place at a certain time, that can get thrown off when a kid gets sick. When that happens, you’re just trying to get by. Having an open, honest, communicative relationship with the SD Team helps. They know I’m doing the best I can and that there are things that are out of my control, but there’s trust that I will get things done. 

There’s so much pressure that we put on ourselves – moms that are working and not feeling like we’re a burden to others by delaying the work. During the quarantine years, I shifted my mindset to realize that it’s ok because I am doing my best all the time and I have to be flexible to let things shift. Even sometimes I have a sitter here and Rosie needs to come to me and cry and that’s ok because I’m in a working space with my family (working from home) 

Strategies I’ve learned here are helpful too, like “connect before correct” or giving options in positive language of what my kids can do when they enter my office “read a book over there” “give mom a hug and then let mom work”. 

There’s also a traveling aspect of my work. There’s travel every single month. So, it’s also about figuring out who I can lean on in my support system and have a high level of trust with so that they can have adults around to support me and them

I was able to lean on Jody and say “Jody I’m already scheduled for a whole week out. I can’t do two weeks with the kids.” She said “Yes, I get it. I support you.” 


What is one thing you’d tell your younger self during your (first) pregnancy knowing all that you do now? 

Everything always works out. Ask for help when you need it. Know it’s ok to slow down b/c this time goes fast and it’s a critical time for your children. 


What advice do you have for other working moms?

When you think of routine, make routines for yourself as well – particularly finding ways to sleep when the kids are sleeping. See who your network is and what ways they can help. In the Latino community, we lean on our elders for help with our kids. I couldn’t have done it without the elders in my family. What you learn when you’re juggling all the pieces – career, family – will only make you stronger in your own career endeavors because you’re juggling so much at one time and there’s a lot of learning there.