Mom to Joseph
Director, Marketing & Sales
4 months maternity leave
What did you struggle with most about returning to work after having your kids?
Leaving Joseph felt like a betrayal. From the moment he was born until the first day I left for work we had been inseparable. Even when one or both of us (rarely) slept, we were only inches apart. Even when I showered I would position his little rock and play over the threshold of the bathroom door so he was in sight. I struggled with the thought of being separated during every aspect of his day from our morning cuddles to nursing and even worse, the thought of missing important milestones. Thank God for pictures and Facetime because they really did make a huge difference those first few months and even today!
What do you find difficult about being a working parent?
It is nearly impossible to balance work and being a mom in a balanced way that will make you feel good. Some days you tip the scale and throw all your energy into one side of working or parenting but the other side of the scale tips and that's ok.
Balance - a woman at my company who is a senior executive and working mom said it best... It is nearly impossible to balance work and being a mom in a balanced way that will make you feel good. Some days you tip the scale and throw all your energy into one side of working or parenting but the other side of the scale tips and that's ok. There are some days where I leave work at 9pm feeling like I couldn't have possibly been more productive or on my game but as soon as I get in the car and look at the time my heart sinks knowing I missed seeing my son that night. The secret, for me, is to try to be in the moment wherever I am whether that is home with him or at work and to fully focus on just that minute that I am in so it gets all my attention.
What do you enjoy about being a working parent?
I am proud to be a working mom. I think it is wonderful for a child to see their parent as a person with a strong work ethic. It also gives me pride that my hard work, combined with my husband's, positions him for a better life. It affords us to give him the best schooling, experiences, etc.
After being back at work for some time, have your views about career and family changed?
Above all else it gave me great appreciation for the women who have done it before me. I lean on them for advice and am grateful to have others around to affirm that being a working mom is a good thing. I underestimated the balancing of both but 2 years in think I am finally getting it down!
Knowing what you know now, what’s one thing you wish you could go back in time and tell yourself as you were preparing to return to work or getting ramped up in your role?
Don't be scared. I remember walking into work that first day back and thinking "can I really do this?". Can I come back and focus like I used to and add the same value I did before I left. Despite the lack of sleep and heartache, the answer was a resounding yes. I am in a better place in my career than I could have ever dreamed of and my son is thriving as well. It is a wonderful balance and there was nothing to be scared of. It is just a "new normal."
What did you choose for childcare, and how has it been for your family?
My mom watched him exclusively the first year and a half of me working. Now we have a nice balance of still having her, a nanny and pre-school. My mother is the greatest gift in the world. She has been integral in his development and has more love and patience than I could have ever asked work. She is really a saint and the bond her and my son have is the most beautiful gift in the world.
Be brave...you got this momma! And on the days you feel like you don't, reach out to the women around you for support and comfort!