It's working for Lia Griffith, DIY Designer
"Care, eating healthy, nurturing myself, good rest and keeping the mind happy are the most important things to do while carrying a child."
Lia Griffith, mom of one daughter, is a DIY designer, crafter, photographer and stylist, that makes beautiful things. Lia’s designs and tutorials are featured in more than 30 publications and her work has featured on many creative sites and blogs including West Elm, Apartment Therapy, Country Living, Design Sponge, House Beautiful and DIY Network.
Lia is a single mom, who had an incredible source of support when her daughter was little. She was able to to split childcare duties with her mother, who shared office space with her as a freelance illustrator, while Lia managed her design business.
WHAT IS ONE PIECE OF ADVICE YOU WISH YOU COULD OFFER YOUR FORMER EXPECTANT SELF?
I would tell myself that care, eating healthy, nurturing myself, good rest and keeping my mind happy is the most important thing to do while carrying a child.
WHAT WAS YOUR PRIMARY MOTIVATION FOR DECIDING TO RETURN (OR NOT) TO WORK?
Two reasons really. I was on my way to being a single mom so needed to support my daughter and because I loved my work as a graphic designer.
IF YOU BREASTFED, WAS THERE A PLACE FOR YOU TO PUMP THAT MET YOUR NEEDS AND WAS CONDUCTIVE TO YOUR SUCCESS?
When I was breastfeeding I was working from my home office so this made it easy to manage.
HOW MUCH LEAVE DID YOU TAKE, AND HOW COMFORTABLE WERE YOU TAKING IT?
I only took one month off of my work. I wasn’t very comfortable asking for more as I wanted to make sure I had work again when I needed it.
HOW EASY WAS IT TO PUT A CHILDCARE ARRANGEMENT TOGETHER AND DID IT WORK FOR YOUR FAMILY?
For the first few years I was able to have my own office space that I shared with my mother who was a freelance illustrator. We kept my daughter with us and shared taking care of her. Once she was out of diapers I decided to put her in a part time daycare where she would have a place to play with other kids.
WHEN DID THE “NEW NORMAL” SET IN FOR YOU?
The new normal set in when I think I was feeling pretty comfortable with my new mom role.
WHAT WAS YOUR BIGGEST CHALLENGE GOING BACK TO WORK?
The biggest challenge was multi tasking. Since I was able to work for myself, I found that I did most of my work when she was napping or after bedtime. I maintained regular business hours to be available for my clients.
WHO WAS YOUR BIGGEST SOURCE OF SUPPORT IN RETURNING TO WORK?
My mother was my biggest support in returning to work. We both were running our separate design/illustration businesses so we were able to work together and care for my daughter.
AS A WORKING PARENT, A GOOD DAY IS WHEN…
As a working parent, a good day is when Emily is well and thriving.
AS A WORKING PARENT, A BAD DAY IS WHEN…
As a working parent, a bad day is when I have to take care of a sick child and balance the rest of my life.
AS A WORKING PARENT, I NEVER EXPECTED __ WOULD BE SO HARD AND __ WOULD BE SO MUCH EASIER.
As a working parent, I never expected being a single parent would be so hard and that click into the full time mom roll would be so much easier!