In that time we’ve heard from two amazing mothers who are making the work/life balance work for them and successfully building two fabulous blogs. Each of them admitted that whilst it is hard and sacrifices do have to be made, if you are organised and motivated then anything is possible. This month we hear from Justine who blogs at Liljemandbabye and is no exception.
As an update from me, I’ve now hit the six month mark since returning to work and can definitely say that things are getting easier. Whether that’s because Ettie is a little older so I don’t feel as guilty leaving her, or because I was working through some emotional issues linked to the MC that I probably wasn’t aware of that have now passed. Either way I’ve found I’m arriving in the office a lot more energised and ready to tackle the day ahead. I’ve even re-started the process of becoming Chartered, something I thought was a complete pipe dream as little as two months ago. So to anyone out there who may be struggling, please don’t give up, talk to friends, make changes where you can to make life a little easier (for example I now take two Mondays off a month as annual leave so I can spend a day with Ettie), and most of all don’t be too hard on yourself. The adjustment is hard and it does take time, but you’ll get there, and if you don’t there are always other options.
So with that in mind, lets hand over to Justine who works 22 hours a week as an administrative assistant. She admits finding a balance is hard, but working part-time allows her to relish the challenges of a working environment, whilst also allowing her to cook the family meals from scratch 6 evenings a week!! Go Justine!!
The Mummy Juggle: Justine from Lil Jem and BabyE
Here I sit, fourteen months and 4 days after giving birth to E, with an awful cold. Not that having a cold has affected my day in any way shape or form. I’ve still been expected to perform full Mummy duties, despite it being my Hubby’s day off.
Since having E, it feels like my quirks of personality have found their purpose. My need to make lists, to plan ahead, to be on time, and to consider any eventuality, were once possibly annoying to others, but now they help me balance every plate that I currently have spinning in the air.
The plate balancing became harder when I started back at work in August 2017. E was nine months old and as much as I was ready to go back to work, 22 hours as an administrative assistant, I was nervous of how I would be able to cope.
I wanted to continue cooking for the family, as this was a chore I discovered I actually loved doing. I also needed to ensure the house was kept clean, and that E had plenty of quality time with me as well as getting to experience as many new things as possible.
Being part-time has afforded me the opportunity to just be Me, instead of Mother, or Wife. I’ve relished the challenges my role gives me, and I’ve discovered that I can go to work and be a good Mother too.
My days with E are completely focused on her well-being. We craft, go to classes, go for walks, and meet to with other Mothers and babies. I have the best of both worlds, although I can completely understand why some women don’t return to work, and others return full-time.
I also cook all the family meals from scratch, six nights of the week. The seventh night is left to the Hubby, and he inevitably gets a takeaway!
On top of this, I have my blog to write, and a cat to care for. Those spinning plates still whirl and even now, while ill, I need to keep them up. Inevitably, one will fall and it worries me which one: work, housekeeping, cooking, food shopping, time for the Hubby, time for myself, time for E. But, being someone who plans everything keeps me calm. If a plate does fall, it won’t smash, I know it won’t. My fail safe is my Hubby, and my lists. And if all else fails….
Thank-you Justine, cooking from scratch six nights a week is no mean feat!! You’re doing a wonderful job, thank-you for sharing your story and introducing me to your lovely new blog.
You can find Justine on Twitter here @LILJEM81 and Instagram here: @LilJem.and.Baby.E
If you have a story to tell and would like to take part in this guest series, please drop me a line at email@example.com. It would be great to hear from you x
Thank you for sharing my story. Reading it back I still wonder how I manage to do it all. I think it’s easy to overlook everything a Mother (and Father) does, and we should be proud of ourselves.
You both seem to be doing a brilliant job! Like Justine says, sometimes things may fall a bit, but it’s ok. And omg, finding the time to cook from scratch 6 nights a week, I know I couldn’t handle that lol.
We definitely become professional plate spinners once we have children don’t we. It can be hard to strike the right balance but Justine sounds like she’s found the best way for her and her family and that’s all any of us can wish for. Thank you for joining #FamilyFunLinky x