"Your 'perfect' view of what balance looks like might change 100xs. Don't be afraid to let your partner, employer, and others know every time it changes. There's no way to foresee what you'll want until you're in that situation."

What is one piece of advice you wish you could offer your former expectant self?

Your “perfect” view of what balance looks like might change 100xs. Don’t be afraid to let your partner, employer, and others know every time it changes. There’s no way to foresee what you’ll want until you’re in that situation.

FOR MOMS: If you breastfed, was there a place for you to pump that met your needs and was conducive to your success? If you breastfed, how did you decide to continue? FOR DADS: What, if any, adjustments did you (or your workplace) make to your schedule after having a baby? Was it specific to your manager or larger, whole work culture?

Occasionally with the first, though she never once took a bottle. With the 2nd and 3rd I traveled before their first birthdays, sometimes for business and sometimes for pleasure, so I did have to pump.

How much leave did you take, and how comfortable were you taking it?

I took 16 weeks off with my first and 12 weeks with the next 2.

What was your biggest challenge going back to work?

Breastfeeding. I worked almost exclusively at home for the first year with my first child.

Fill in the blanks: As a working parent, I never expected ____ would be so hard and ____ would be so much easier!

Sometimes childcare is monotonous. It’s not all playing with the kids. Sometimes work is terrible and stressful. Both come with great jobs. Both working and having a family are two of my great pleasures in life, even if they are both frustrating sometimes. I can’t imagine one without the other now.

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