A Word Of Advice: Juggling Career and Baby

Hello Kally,

Like yourself, I’m a new mother. In the US, the maternity package isn’t that awesome as other countries. I worked as a typist in a homegrown company and while their benefits ain’t that great, they made it up by paying our salary slightly better than the market rates. That being said, I have always loved my job and my company.

My husband is from the military and he is away a lot. Nearing this August, he is going to be deployed again. So far, I have returned only partially to my job. Working for 3 days out of 5, and spending most of my time with my 3 months old son. Right now at it is, life is pretty simple, however, once my husband is away, I am going to be managing alone. Both of our family are living far away from different states. So the only help I’m going to have is a neighbour who lives 3 houses away to babysit him when I’m away at work.

I have read that you are a new mother yourself and your family is not in the same country as you. I am amazed to learn that you have had no help at all but yet, you managed to be quite a successful freelancer as well as maintaining this blog. How do you do it?

I can’t even climb out of bed on some mornings because the baby is still on frequent night feeds. My husband is worried that I’ll let myself slip into depression (my family has history of depression) once he is deployed. I am also thinking if I should quit my job completely and stay home to take care of the little one since there is no financial need for me to stay working. But like I’ve said before, I really love my job and the place I work in. I’m halfhearted whether I should give it up. Moreover, recently my boss has been dropping hints that he wants me to come back to work full time soon.

Could you share your secrets? How do you juggle work and motherhood at the same time?

Waiting to hear from you.

Amy T.

Hey Amy,

Welcome to Motherhood! Trust me, it is only going to get better. I’m on my 6th month into motherhood.

It’s great that you love your job and your company, not many people can say about their careers. If you love what you do, don’t give it up unless you don’t have a choice. Working part time seems to be having your cake and eat it too. If your boss is bugging you to go back to full time, do take it as a compliment (means you’re good at your work!) but you can always turn him down gently but firmly.

Many folks may tell you that you will have to make a choice between your career and motherhood: you can’t be a good mother if you work or you can’t be a good employee if you are a mother. Not true. Yes, it is difficult but not impossible to balance both. It takes careful precision planning to make sure you have time to hone your work skills and yet allocate quality time to spend with your family (let’s not forget the husband here). And your current part time plan works well here, you get to work 3 days and spend 4 days with your son.

Lucky you that you have someone trustworthy to take care of your little one when you are away at work. For myself, I divided my time clearly between my clients and my family. I only take on projects that are not time sensitive and I do not have to be tied down to a laptop all the time. There are times I cringe at projects that I will have to give up, projects that both interest me and bring in good money but if a project takes me away from my little one, that’s where I draw the line. When she’s awake, I shelve all work aside including working on MiddleMe and give my full attention to her, be it reading to her, playing with her etc. When she’s asleep, I work like the devil on freelancing, MiddleMe and housework.

Throughout my MiddleMe articles on freelancing, you’ll find valuable advice on how I balance my time and how exactly I do it. Not everything I suggested is applicable to you hence you need to apply and see what works for you and your son, perhaps modify from there.

One important point to highlight: you will need to find time to take care of yourself too. It is easy to get lost in the midst of taking care of your family and proving yourself in your job, forgetting that you need some ‘me’ time too. Time to go out with your girlfriends, time for a manicure even time to sneak in a good movie with a tub of ice cream, you’ll need to squeeze some time for all that to maintain your sanity.

I hope my advice helps. Don’t doubt what you are doing, you are already giving it your best.


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