So for me, being an entrepreneur allows me to build something that matters to me while also affording flexibility to spend time with my daughters.
What was your primary motivation for returning to work or changing your work situation after starting a family?
After having my daughters I knew that I personally needed to be even more fulfilled and passionate about my career because it meant time away from my girls. I also wanted to set an example of a strong, confident, driven woman. So for me, being an entrepreneur allows me to build something that matters to me while also affording flexibility to spend time with my daughters.
Tell us about your planning for your new child - timed around your career? Not at all? Share the skinny!
My husband, Pete, and I are both very driven in our careers but made a conscious choice to not allow our careers to affect our family planning. We had our second daughter while he was in business school and I was launching HoneyBee Child! Not exactly great timing but it was the right choice for us. My father always told me that if you wait until you have enough money to have child or everything is lined up just right, you'll never have children!
What was your biggest challenge to going back to work after starting a family?
Missing my sweet girls! I know I occasionally miss out on milestones and it breaks my heart but I know that I'm working for them, too.
How easy was it to put a childcare arrangement together and did it work for your family?
Oh this is such a challenge for families! We've found that a nanny is the right choice for our family because it affords us the flexibility we need with our careers and the consistency and structure our girls crave.
How much leave did you take, and how comfortable were you taking it? If you are a single parent, how did you navigate your leave?
I was granted the six weeks of paid leave under the FMLA and used my vacation to extend it to 13 weeks when my eldest daughter turned 3 moths. I so wish I could have taken more - she was at the best stage right when I had to go back to work and it broke my heart those first weeks.
If you returned to work, when did your confidence around work kick in? How long did the adjustment take (or are you still adjusting?) When did the “new normal” set in for you?"
It took about a month for a new normal to set in for my family when I returned to work as a consultant. But, that's when we realized this "normal" wasn't going to work for us and decided to take the plunge becoming self employed and ultimately launching two companies.
What, if any, advice would you give to employers to ease strain around family leave and returning to the workplace?
More paid leave! And flexibility on how to use that leave that allows families to ease back into work. A flex schedule would have been great and the ability to work from home in the beginning.
A good day is when:
Everyday! I feel so blessed to have two happy healthy little girls and a loving, supportive husband.
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