Mom to Aiden, Ian and Evan
Media/Social Media Manager
What did you struggle with most about returning to work after having your kids?
I was the first of my friends to have a baby and my sisters are stay at home moms (bless their hearts), so I didn't feel like I had a lot of resources that could give first hand experience. I remember feeling immense pressure to breastfeed and not only was that WAY more difficult than I was expecting but I didn't know how to manage feeding my son when I went back to work. How was he going to eat? Is he going to lose weight? What if he gets sick if I use formula, breast milk is best for immunity.
What do you find difficult about being a working parent?
Time! Time with each of my 3 kids. Time with my husband. Time with myself. Time for errands/chores. Time for extended family. Time for volunteering at school, sports, friends, exercise.....
What do you enjoy about being a working parent?
I love that my kids are comfortable enough to sleep, eat, poop anywhere and have no difficulty fulfilling basic needs outside of the house. I love that they do activities all day long and learn things, that even if I was at home, wouldn't be teaching them. I love that my kids have always had friends even at the youngest of ages, but still love a good hug from mom. I love showing my kids that hard work pays off. Every time we travel or do something we remind them "this is why we work". I love that I have a place to go to contribute my thoughts as an adult and know that I am managing EVERYTHING that life brings as best as I can.
After being back at work for some time, have your views about career and family changed?
Everything can change is my mental reminder to myself. I have found that different stages in life with kids has brought new personal necessities. After the birth of my third son, I was feeling MAJOR mom guilt about never being there for all the firsts. My husband reminded me that "if it's not working change it". I decided to look into the opportunity for a job share within my company. After a year long sales pitch and looking for the right partner I was granted my wish. I was a working mom at major corporation working 2 1/2 days a week. This allowed 4 1/2 days at home with my kids which felt like I was getting the best of both worlds. I never wanted to step out of the workforce since things change so quickly in media/marketing and I truly enjoyed the work, so this was a great solution. I was able to keep this arrangement for 3 years until my youngest started Kindergarten. Now that I'm back full time I do make it a habit to leave no later than 5:00 so that I can spend as much time with my boys before bed. Not working for you? Change it! Be creative in a solution that can work.
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?
Remember that most people can't remember anything before the age of 5. No adults has ever said, "I remember when I was 8 months old my mom was late picking me up from daycare." However, when they are old enough to understand they will recognize that everything you've done was to provide them opportunities that wouldn't have been possible if you didn't work. I'm looking forward to the days when my boys want to know if I can help them get an internship at my company or through some connection I have.
What did you choose for childcare, and how has it been for your family?
PRO: Most childcare facilities have a curriculum and know what level of education your child is able to comprehend.
PRO: Most childcare facilities cook a hot lunch for your kids
PRO: Most facilities are inspected and have state-wide guidelines they have to follow (Cleaning procedures, room size per kid, number of staff for class size, security etc.)
PRO: They make little friends and my school used to send pics every day so I didn't miss out on their new adventures.
CON: You have to get up early so your kids don't have a late wake-up for their internal clock. CON: DAMN! It is so expensive to have 3 kids in daycare full time. (but make sure you get your tax write off)