October 2018 | Working Mom of Milwaukee Spotlight | Cristina Ramirez
Each month we celebrate an amazing working mom in our community. Check out this month’s WMM Spotlight!
What is your name and profession?
I’m Cristina Ramirez and work at Muscle and Movement Therapy in Cedarburg. I’m a Chiropractor as well as a Placenta Encapsulation Specialist.
What are your kids’ names and ages?
I have 4 children. Jakson, 12, Jonah, 10 and Grayson and Noah, 6 (twins).
Explain/describe one of your proudest mom moments recently.
Oh gosh, I love proud mom moments because I feel like there are so many guilty mom moments! My most recent one has been with my twins at their elementary school. They have a Buddy Bench on their playground which is where a kid who is feeling left out or lonely can sit. Other kids see that there is someone who needs a friend and they can invite them to play. My twins’ teacher told me that Noah is always the first one to come to the Buddy Bench and invites the kid to play. I feel like I’m always doubting myself as a mother, but to hear that my kids are kind and reach out to others makes me feel like I’m doing something right.
What do you like best about your job?
I feel so honored to be part of a mom’s life in those magical times of pregnancy and postpartum. I hold those times of my own life as some of my most beautiful….and hard. I hold the women that surrounded me in those times in a very special place in my heart and I hope to be the same for the moms that I treat. A listening ear, encouragement, and validation that you are doing ok (even when you feel the exact opposite) can mean the world. I remember how important that was to me and want to be that for other moms.
What’s the hardest part of being a working mom?
Balance. Always balance. I feel like my house and home falls apart around me when I’m not here but I want to always be available for my patients.
How long have you been a working mom?
I’ve had so many transitions as a working mom. I graduated from chiropractic school in 2006 when my first son was only three months old. I’ve worked days, nights, and early weekend mornings when my first two were little. After the birth of my twins in 2012 I stopped working to stay at home full-time. I’m back working now that they are all in school all day. It’s been a scary transition, but I feel like I’m discovering myself as a person again besides “mom”.
Any words of advice for other working moms, especially those that are newer working moms?
My mom bought me a book this year titled “Grace Not Perfection”. That is my motto right now. No person is perfect. There is no perfect mom. There is no perfect working mom. There are plenty of opportunities to feel guilty about not giving enough to mothering or working. I’m very guilty of this and so are most moms I know. Give yourself the grace that you would to another mom. Nobody expects perfection from you. Love your family, enjoy your job, and be kind to yourself.
Favorite MKE restaurant or hangout?
This is so hard to narrow down! If we’re hanging out in our hometown of Cedarburg then I love eating at Brandywine, wine at Ernie’s, beer at the Cedarburg Art Museum Beer Garden, and music at Summer Sounds. Lobos in Grafton has great margaritas, good food, and the most kid-friendly and kind staff! I could eat Mexican food every day of the week so my favorites around Milwaukee are Riviera Maya, Tres Hermanos, Cielito Lindo, and El Rey.
What makes your family unique?
There are a few things that stand out to me with our family, First, having four boys! I always wanted a big family but never pictured myself with one. I love having this gaggle of boys who wrestle, yell, snuggle with me, and make me laugh daily. Secondly, how proud my kids are of our Mexican heritage. They have grown up celebrating who we are as Mexican-Americans and loving to learn about our family history on both sides.
What (in your opinion) is Milwaukee’s biggest opportunity to improve the lives of working moms and better support them?
Employers who offer rooms for working moms to pump is first on my mind! When I was a new mom in 2006 I had to return to my chiropractic internship when my son was two weeks old in order to graduate on time. I had to pump in a chair in the corner of the break room/lunch room/office manager’s room. I faced that corner with my shirt up and didn’t even think to question it. Something as simple as a private, clean, comfortable room to pump can make a difference in a mom’s experience.
Will you celebrate Hispanic Heritage Month or Dia de los Muertos? If so, how do you like to celebrate?
We do a small altar in our house with photos of our family who have passed. My grandmother burned Virgen de Guadalupe candles year round. I burn them for her. She was the matriarch and held us all together.