We are back with our weekly updates from our in house agony aunt ‘Aunty Fabulous’ and hear some of the questions she has been asked, it was a great to hear how, ‘Aunty Fabulous’ tackled these obstacles.
Question: A lot of our readers find that is not worth sending their babies to nursery once maternity leave ends due to financial struggles. Ambitious career minded women wanting to go back to work are simply stuck as North London nurseries are extremely expensive and seem to require an entire salary to pay for this privilege. How would you advise these women as being a stay at home mum was not on the agenda for them?
Aunty Fabulous Says:
Going back to work full time can be a challenge for some mum’s after having a baby. And it can be financially challenging putting your baby into a nursery – especially in North London!
It is worth enquiring at your local Doctors Surgery or Local Hospital to see if they have any alternative and more economical options.
Having a baby changes our lives in many ways. When it comes to working full time adapting and tweaking what we used to do can be far more fulfilling than we think.
And having a baby and being a mum is also a life-long-career that we opt into the day we get pregnant!
It doesn’t mean we are unable to fulfill our ambitions and do both! If financially a nursery isn’t the right option then there are ways round it.
Adapting to your new situation as a Mummy is key to your happiness.
If you were going back to the job you had before baby perhaps you could go part time. After having maternity leave going back full time initially can also be challenging for you being away from your baby and easing back into it again.
Aunty Fabulous Tip:
If there are a few friends that are in the same position as you perhaps you could look at helping each other out two or three days a week whilst you go back to work. This will help you all financially and hopefully give the time you want to rediscover the career minded women you were. Or perhaps there are family members that are just waiting for you to ask them for help one or two days a week!
Alternatively consider what you were doing and other alternatives that you could do from home to begin with until your baby is old enough to start state school.
Some state schools have nurseries in them now. Or perhaps it would be more reasonable for you to hire an experienced qualified nanny with another friend and share the cost.
Going back to work full time though may not be what you thought!
Aunty Fabulous Tip:
Having your own space and time for you is important. Give yourself ‘me’ time once a week. Ask a family member or friend to take care of your baby for a few hours. Go to a movie, an art gallery, or even out for a cup of coffee. Do your hair and put make-up and a nice outfit on that makes you feel good. Do something to feel like YOU again. The more you rediscover yourself and feel good the more you will be able to give your baby.
Resenting having to stay at home can turn into an obsession. Look out for the signs such as getting irritable quickly, constantly finding ways to get out of the house and away from baby, not realising that what you have is precious and you need to nurture it. STOP feeling sorry for yourself and start coming up with ways to have your space and a career you enjoy without financial burden of sending your baby to an expensive nursery.
I had a client who went back to work after her son was six months old. She was desperate to get back into the advertising world. Working again included long days, late nights, dinners out and trips away. She had forgotten how exhausting it was!
The first few days were like an adventure! Her husband was in a position to work from home and said he was happy for her to go back to work as he knew how much she missed it.
After the first week she was exhausted. And then something happened. She missed her baby boy so much and couldn’t wait to get home.
My client didn’t realise how much she wanted to be with her son.
She didn’t want to miss his first words, his first steps or anything else. He was her ambition! She had always wanted children to love and take care of and here she was worrying about getting back to her full-on career.
We talked about things she had always wanted to do and one of them was painting. I suggested doing a course and see what happened from there.
She asked her boss if it would be possible to go part time three mornings a week and he agreed for the first three months she was back.
She was so happy and did a painting course every Wednesday evening after she had settled her baby down for the night.
After the six week course she started doing her own paintings and her friends and family loved them. She enrolled for a couple of other painting courses following the first one and started to build a small collection of her own paintings! Friends and family loved them and suggested she sold them!
My client decided to show them at the local Art Gallery. It was a massive success! She now paints for a living and has left the job she thought was her life’s ambition!
The great thing is she now has the opportunity to do something she loves in her own time and spend time with her baby without being exhausted and missing out on special moments with him.
Her husband looks after their son a couple of mornings or afternoons a week and she has family members that help her out on other days if she needs it.
Expensive North London nurseries may not be financially helpful when you want to go back to work but if you look deep down inside yourself you may realise another dream and an amazing compromise that will be so much better and give you time to be the Mummy you always wanted to be and time to be YOU again.
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