Before I had my twins in March of this year, I thought I had it all figured out. After several months of working so hard my hands ached when I typed, I took the scary step to become completely self-employed as a blogger and freelance writer.
As a planner, I did not make the decision lightly. I made sure I had six months of consistently high income before I felt comfortable enough to be my own boss.
How I Prepared to Manage My Business on Maternity Leave
I thought I would be able to easily transition into parenthood a few months after going full time, even though I was having twins. I was very prepared, and I felt ready for the challenge.
I wrote as many blog posts as I could ahead of time, I hired a blog manager to answer my e-mails for six weeks so I could take a maternity leave, and I did my best to keep up with comments and social media while I was nursing my babies at all hours of the day and night. I even had dozens of bloggers submit guest posts to me as a favor so that I had content for months after the twins were born.
It took me a long time to figure out how to make the whole businesswoman/stay at home mommy thing work. There were many days I thought I’d have to give up everything I had worked for. There were times when I wanted to just be a mom and not a working mom. I had many projects in the works, and I cried sometimes at night thinking I’d have to e-mail various people to tell them I just couldn’t do it. I thought I couldn’t manage it all.
Problems I Didn’t Think Of
Just a few weeks after my twins were born, I found out I only had 16 days to move clear across the country for my husband’s work. During the three-day drive there, I starting having big technical problems with my main website.
With only my phone for Internet and nothing set up at our new apartment yet, I watched my income plummet due to the technical issues all while having six-week-old twins who were keeping me up every 2-3 hours at night. It seemed like it would be it for my business. I wanted to just stop, but with the support of my husband who knew how much my business meant to me, I started to develop a plan to get it back on track.
How I Make it Work as a Working Mom
My husband and I talked extensively about how I could be happier and more productive, because at that point, I really wasn’t either of those things. I wanted to work so badly but I couldn’t take care of the twins and work at the same time. I thought that’s what work-at-home parents did, but it wasn’t working for me.
I started to wake up early, around 5 or 6 AM despite being a night owl. I started working like a maniac during naps. I stopped wasting time. My husband agreed to watch the twins every Saturday and Sunday morning while I took up shop at Starbucks to write.
I decided I wouldn’t work during the day while the babies were active. The whole point of staying at home was to watch them grow up, and if I wanted them to just take a nap already so I could work, it really wasn’t fair to them.
Once I got a schedule down and started to hustle like crazy during the time I did have, things started to pick up. I started a freelance writing coaching business that boosted my income and made me feel great to help others get to the point where they could work for themselves.
My twins are almost 5 months old now, and I really feel like I have achieved the balance I was looking for. Sometimes the house gets messy, sometimes I feel overwhelmed, but never again will I consider shutting down my business just because things got hectic. To anyone who wants to do the same thing, know it’s possible. Possible – not easy. It’s also very worth it. Good luck!