The decision to become a mother was actually very tough. Don’t get me wrong I wanted a child for as longs I can remember and it pained me to wait so long to have one, but the actual decision on when to have one was absolutely tough.
You see, I had watched almost every person I know have a kid or 2 or 3 before me, and I really wanted to wait until I was married and set in my career before I was ready to have a baby of my own. I had seen all sorts of other people struggle and although I didn’t grow up poor, we certainly weren’t rich either, and I wanted my future child to have more than I did.
When I started my life COMPLETELY over in 2011, I figured it would be a very long shot before I ever had a kid. Not to mention I went through medical problems, and a divorce so it was looking farther and farther away. When I married my husband Patrick in 2013, I inherited 3 amazing kids and I decided that if I didn’t have a child of my own, it wouldn’t be the end of the world, but we both agreed to have just 1 of our own together.
Flash forward to the end of 2014, we decided we would try and have a child, and begin that process. But in all honesty, I don’t think I really thought it would happen, or maybe it would take a long time, and I had been so focused my career for over 10 years that while I wanted it to happen it was still kind of scary.
I work(ed) in a very MALE dominated industry and I had spent over 10 years building a name for myself in my business and generated some amazing clients. I also at the time had a HORRIBLE boss that I felt was always out to push me out of my company and I feared that having a kid and going on any sort of maternity leave would be the end of my career and legacy.
When we got pregnant in March of 2015, I knew I had to tell my company, and I also started to panic a little. I was so excited and literally over the moon, but when I thought about work I was so scared. How could i tell them? Would I be demoted? Will my income suffer? I knew my child would be worth it but what struggle would I have ahead of me?
But I did it, I had my daughter, I compromised with myself, and I didn’t take ANY Maternity leave. Although I was entitled to 6 weeks, I didn’t take any, instead I took 3 days off (the 3 I was in the hospital) and went back to work on Monday (I had my daughter on a Wednesday). I even had a conference call in the hospital at 5am with a client in the UK while my daughter nursed and my husband slept. (By the way- Not taking maternity leave is my only regret)
So what happened? Well, I had an amazing baby girl, who I’m totally in love with. My income did take a small cut while I adjusted to the Mommy/Work balance, the horrible boss got fired, and things just kind of worked out.
The reason I share this story is because I think working career women have a hard time taking that leap and I’ve seen studies that show women are waiting longer to have kids for this reason. Plus, I think its important to take away the fact that although it was scary, uncertain, and hard- the reward was totally worth it. There is nothing quite like watching your child do things for the first time, smile at you, and give you a kiss.
Anyone else have a similar story?