The transition from being a self-employed woman to a self-employed mom was less of a gradual process and more of a drastic change. I remember leading up to my due date debating in my mind whether or not I should bring my laptop with me to the hospital so I could fulfill orders while waiting for Silas to be born.
Although the passion for running my own little business hasn't dwindled, thankfully my idea of work-life/family balance has changed.
The first 6 months or so of running my business after Silas was born is a complete blur and it felt very rocky. Partly because Silas had no idea what a normal sleep schedule was and partly because I had no idea what I wanted my schedule to look like for work.
These are the times I typically get work done with a 19 month old.
Naps and End of the Day
These days Silas takes one nap every day in the afternoon and sleeps 11-12 hours every night. 9 times out of 10 I use nap time to get the bulk of my work done. If I'm lucky, Silas naps for 2 hours, but usually it's closer to and hour and a half. There's no surfing the internet, reading blogs or catching up on Instagram. I work until everything is done or Silas is awake. If there's any work left over or I have an idea I want to come to fruition, I save that work for when he goes to bed at the end of the day. And even then, I do my best to stick to no more than 2 hours of work at the end of the day. Getting in bed at a decent hour is my goal every night.
When he's at Daycare
When Silas was about 4 months old, I realized a regular and reliable babysitter would be helpful for my business. I casually mentioned this to a friend one day when we were hanging out and to my surprise she offered to watch Silas two days a week. I couldn't have asked for a better deal. Typically Monday and Wednesday mornings are when Silas goes to her place and I devote all of my time to work. This is very helpful & keeps me sane - I'm not sure I could run my business without this extra time.
Quick edits on my phone or laptop
A good part of my business is responding to inquiries. Thankfully this can be done on my phone, anywhere and anytime. Occasionally I have clients who need a quick edit done on their files in Photoshop and e-mailed back within a certain timeframe. The laptop comes in handy when these times pop up. Silas isn't at the age yet where I can work on my computer while he plays in the room - if I'm lucky, I get 10 minutes in, but those 10 minutes are all I need for the quick edits.
Adjusting for being able to work 8 hours a day at my leisure to waiting around for the toddler to nap or go to daycare has been a great lesson in time management and prioritization.