"Opening a business is like 10 kids in itself! Giving birth to a baby and a business within months of each other was one of the most stressful things I’ve done in my life.”

Anjali Varma’s back-to-work story is not one about an inflexible or ungenerous employer. She was working (virtually) for American Express and received 3 months of paid maternity leave after both of her pregnancies, which is quite nice in the corporate world. But even though she appreciated the arrangement that made it possible to drop in to play with or nurse her son, she was still hitting the pavement—the actual pavement—a lot.

So shortly after she had her second child, Anjali decided to start her own business, launching Kidville Bethesda, a children’s enrichment facility that offers classes for newborn – 6 year olds, retail, haircuts, and birthday parties.

“Opening a business is like 10 kids in itself! Giving birth to a baby and a business within months of each other was one of the most stressful things I’ve done in my life.”

Whether at Kidville Bethesda or through her blog “The Modern Mompreneur,” her YouTube channel, or monthly meetups, Anjali has dedicated herself to helping women better manage their lives as mothers, and, better understand what they want from those changing lives too.

“I meet a lot of moms like me who want to find something to do on their own. So many of them tried to make it work in the corporate world and they’re realizing, like I did, that the best way for them to have the flexibility they need is to do their own thing.”

As an entrepreneur, Anjali is able to spend time with her kids as-needed, be that school events or sicknesses, she can schedule around her kids, too, but, as she points out, “Business is always on my mind. There’s more flexibility, yes, but it’s still a full time job. And unlike the corporate world where you actually might get a maternity leave, there is no maternity leave as a business owner, you’re working from day one!”

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