Liza Dawson says she has a good life.
She gets up at 6:45 a.m., and her 6-year-old boy and 2-year-old girl get up shortly after. When she leaves her home in the suburbs to catch the 8:07 train to her job in New York City, a live-in nanny takes over.
Dawson, a senior editor at William Morrow & Co., returns home about 10 1/2 hours later. After the long day at work, her long night at home begins.
"I'm stressed out to the max, but I can't imagine life any other way," she said.
Dawson's optimism may sound unique, but a new Gallup Poll says it isn't.
The survey, commissioned by Working Mother magazine for its May issue, found working women to be increasingly satisfied with the balance in their lives between job and family.
Gallup polled 1,000 working mothers nationwide--500 chosen at random and 500 selected as being committed to careers. The findings seem to contradict those of other studies reported recently in the media by experts in the work-family field.
Other studies found many women--and men--to be uncomfortable with long hours on the job, often riddled with guilt about being away from families and doing so only because they have to.
Some of the Gallup survey's findings:
* Seven of 10 women said they work because it makes them feel good about themselves, regardless of the job they do or how much money they earn.
* Eight of 10 working mothers said they were "extremely" or "very" satisfied with how their children were doing and how they were doing as mothers; 90% described their children as happy.
* From a woman who de-snouts hogs in Missouri to a physics professor in Florida, 75% of the women said they "like" or "love" their jobs. Just 4% said they hate their work.