With this day and age’s shift in gender norms and roles, some people debate the ability of women to grow in their careers while being mothers. However, women like Lexi Stinson, the head coach of women’s soccer, prove that it is certainly possible to both strive for career success and raise a family.
When Stinson found out that she was pregnant, the thought of taking a break from coaching never crossed her mind.
Stinson said, “I knew I would have to adapt but that it would be worth it!”
With the help and support of her husband, Stinson was able to comfortably focus on the women’s soccer team for at least half a season.
“My husband has been a saint. He took paternity leave during the first half of our season which allowed me to focus on coaching,” Stinson shared.
Stinson’s graduate assistant for the team, Joseph Quiray, also eased her workload.
“[Quiray] has stepped up and taken on more this season which has given me peace of mind and allowed me to balance motherhood and coaching,” Stinson said.
Stinson also mentioned that she loves the enthusiasm from the women’s soccer players. Livia Le, a junior chemistry major and #13, displays the excitement she and the rest of the women’s soccer team felt.
Le said, “My favorite memory was when she announced she was pregnant during Christmas break in our team group chat. It was the best Christmas gift ever.”
Though her pregnancy was important to her and the people in her life, she kept it an intimate part of her life.
“I honestly kept my pregnancy pretty quiet. We also didn’t find out the gender until she was born so we never did a gender reveal with the team or anything like that,” Stinson shared.
Stinson’s decision to quietly embrace her pregnancy and to continue focusing on coaching has helped the women’s soccer team.
Le said, “Coach Lexi has always been there for us for every practice and game during her pregnancy. She has always taken the time and dedication to be there for our team as a coach while being pregnant. It has been a fun journey seeing her become a mom and us finally having a team baby!”
Le notes that Stinson’s coaching remained consistent before, during and after her pregnancy.
“She was a great coach then and is still a great coach now. I am blessed to have Coach Lexi as my coach,” Le said. “She has always been good at what she does, which is getting things done no matter the circumstances.”
Stinson’s efforts into her work and home life inspire those around her.
Le shared, “She is a hard working, strong, and caring coach who balances her time to take care of her child and 25+ girls. From her dedication to the team, we are hitting the roads to Houston next week for the conference tournament. Coach Lexi can do it all. #superMOM.”
Stinson herself encourages women to embrace both their careers and their motherhood.
“Becoming a mother and pursuing a career is 100% doable. There is a huge learning curve and there are challenges that you must adapt to,” Stinson said. “For me, it’s important to keep in perspective that the sleepless nights and challenges of having a newborn are just a season of life.”
Stinson especially hopes to show the players on the women’s soccer team that they are capable of incredible feats.
Stinson commented, “I am grateful that we have amazing young women that will be great role models to my daughter. I hope they see that you can strive for excellence as a mother and be committed in your career.”