Next up on the Boss Ladies Who Had Babies questionnaire list, is my business (& personal) friend Meagan Williamson. She welcomed her baby boy in December 2016, and I am so truly humbled and inspired by the business she built through her maternity leave.
She doesn’t share much about her son online, and I 100% respect her reasoning for why. Definitely a thought leader when it comes to that, since she’s been open about it since the beginning.
Although her business is not as a blogger, she is blogger-associated, and self employed. She’s built her consultancy into a mini empire and routinely publishes amazing insight about the platform, while running courses & memberships, and doing account management for the best. Check her out.
1. When was your baby due / did you welcome a child?
2. What was your maternity leave plan? ex. Did your social channels go dark? did you have a backlog of content? Did you keep creating but at a lower output?
12 months from the government paid with top up from my employer at the time. I was only doing my Pinterest work as a side hustle at the time. I had two clients when I gave birth… Took the two weeks off following his birth then started doing account management in January for the two clients. I wasn’t actively seeking clients. I didn’t even have a website for my Pinterest business
3. Did you have a partner that was able to take mat/ pat leave at the same time? Can you describe the type of role they played in supporting you?
My partner took 2 weeks off when Kieran was born – then took pat leave when Kieran was 7 months old. He helped at that time BUT Kieran still wanted mommy 24/7 so it wasn’t a smooth transition…I was still needed all the time.
4. What was something you think you did really well during the first few months postpartum, in terms of work-life balance?
I didn’t spend time on my phone in the bedroom. I had a rule of mostly no phones in the bedroom where I spent a lot of time with the baby. I did what I could while he slept (which was a lot in the early days). I just focussed on figuring out how to mom.
5. What’s something you could have done better during the first few months, in terms of work-life balance?
I don’t think I would change much. I didn’t work much… like an hour a day or so. Here and there. Having that time off was amazing and so nice
6. Did you have a work team to support you during your initial months / year? What kind of role did they play?
Yes. As I said, around when Kieran was 7 months old, James took pat leave. It was amazing to have two of us there since I was so stupidly tired. I was so tired I walked into traffic one day.
7. Business wise, did you anticipate and plan for a shift in content to reflect your changing situation? Or did your brand not change at all?
Since I am not a blogger, it is a little different. Or my business isn’t as a blogger anymore. So I didn’t have to change. From a marketing perspective, I do think there is a part of my biz that as a mom who owns my own biz, it resonates with some people so I do touch upon it
8. How did you manage the transition back to “full time” working life once you were ready? (nanny, more studio/work help, shorter work days)
We started slow. So first Kieran and James would go for an hour.. Then two… Then three. We worked up to full days. In the beginning, even if I was going to something, James wouldn’t be too far off with Kieran so that I could breast feed and have a visit then they would leave again. That really helped.
9. Having done it once, are you considering doing it a second time? *wink wink*
yes. For sure. But it will be so different this time.
10. Is there one piece of advice you wish other self-employed moms knew about?
Plan for the time off. You have no idea what your recovery, adjust to baby life OR what your baby will be like. If you get a sleeper, awesome. If you get a colicky baby, it’s a tough go. If you have an easy going sack of potatoes, life is easy peasy. There is no way to know these things. So you just have to be prepared for the *maybes*. Whether you like it or not!