Work/Life Balance As A New Mama
Guys. You know what’s funny? I’m writing this post on one of those really hard mornings after Lacey was up for two hours in the middle of the night—which I’m sure will change my perspective on the topic of this post! I suppose it was meant to be? :)
The word balance—it’s a confusing AF topic. I used it frequently as a nutritionist to help my clients determine what their unique balance was when it came to healthy eating versus allowing freedom with their food choices. The more I used that word, the more my clients struggled to find balance in their eating habits. It’s kind of like we want more of what we can’t have if we tell ourselves we can’t have it. Does that make sense?
(Again, working on two hours of sleep here ha!)
I’ve been struggling with my own balance ever since having Lacey. I watched other bloggers jump right back into work like it was nothing—posting photos of them with their babies, somehow having time to blog and take care of a newborn. I give them insane credit, because I’m sure they were doing that because they had to. There’s no “maternity leave” in blogging, really!
Because of my difficult recovery (I hopefully only have a few sessions left of pelvic floor physical therapy!), I didn’t feel like I could even attempt to work until five months. I realize this is a massive blessing, because I can work from home and choose my own hours. I don’t know if I could have done it if my job required me to return at 12 weeks. Again, I give this set of mamas the same amount of credit. It’s not easy to leave your baby regardless of their age, especially if you are dealing with postpartum issues.
It saddens me how there’s so much judgment between new moms who either decide to work or decide to stay at home. Both jobs are so hard. In my own life, I find the full days I have with Lacey to be far more challenging than my days working, but that’s probably because of my career. If I was working in my old job in finance and marketing in NYC, I may feel different.
I wanted the best of both worlds: to hold on to what I started building as a blogger the year before Lacey was born (I started Healthy Wifestyle literally the month before I got pregnant!) and to spend as much time as possible with her. I kind of achieved this, but I’m sacrificing on both ends.
To be totally honest, I don’t feel 100% “in” with my work right now. My blogging and posting is inconsistent, because with the amount of childcare I have, it’s all I feel is possible. I’m working very part-time (probably 10 hours per week if that) because that’s what feels good to me right now. I’ve stepped into my role as a mom 110% and put Lacey before everything, probably to a fault.
I didn’t know what end of the spectrum I would sit on when I was pregnant: send Lacey to daycare for most of the week so I could really build my business? (I still contemplate this all the time). Or give up everything for now and become a stay-at-home mom? Both options were appealing in their own ways, and I chose the middle ground.
I cannot stress this point enough: I know I’m blessed to be able to choose. But being that I’ve been building a business for years and have put tens of thousands of dollars into it, I couldn’t just let it all pass me by. Nor could I let these precious years with Lacey pass by. So for right now, I simply tell myself I’m doing my best.
I’m doing my best to stay afloat as a business owner even though things feel messy. (I was supposed to build a new website in the Fall but that probably won’t happen until next year).
I’m doing my best to be an amazing mom to Lacey even though I feel guilty every time I leave her. (I’ve gotten so much better about this, though.)
In my mind, there is no right answer. Every mom I know is doing her best, whether she decides to work 40 hours per week or stay at home. No matter what way you slice it, we should be supporting each other!
I’ll be sharing more about my business decisions within the next week. In the meantime, I’d love to hear from you…
What’s your work/balance/mama situation look like? Are you a stay-at-home mom? Are you a full-time working mama? Somewhere in between? I’d love to hear from you in the comments.