Motherhood: The Hard Decision: To Work or Quit

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Motherhood is the most cherished phase of a woman’s life. A mother can be rightly likened to a perennial river that flows continuously as it bears and rears. A River flows in a beautiful continuity, doesn’t it? No matter how many rocks or stones come in its way yet a river always flows through or over them to move on. Yes! A river changes its course and speed to emerge victorious.  The ability to face it all gives her the mighty strength to join the ocean. Similarly a mother comes across many challenges that call for adjustments, re-adjustments and some hard decisions.  Patience is her virtue as well as her strength. She faces it all to emerge as a pillar of strength that neither budges nor erodes. It stays put.

Those nine months are like a slow and steady preparation for the challenging role we need to play.  Everything seems to fall in place. Child birth brings in a lot of excitement and good cheer. Oh yes! A part of you has come into this world! As we adjust to the little one’s arrival, cherish every moment and also make fresh plans to resume professional responsibilities, we are in for some emotional turmoil. Yes! At times things are not hunky dory for all of us.

Motherly Instincts Play Havoc

The thought of leaving behind the little one brings in a sudden rush of varied emotions. Guilt supersedes the rest as everyone steps in to ask you, ‘When are you joining office?’ Then some of your kith and kin may simply refer to the futility to work or even hint at the lack of any ‘need’ to do so. Above all your motherly instincts play havoc and it is so difficult to handle one’s own heart. Aw! It’s just fine and remember you have your community of mums right behind you. Stay in control and make the best choices for the baby with an open mind. Things usually work out well. Be a role model for other mums by paving the way for the rest to join in.

Procrastination On our part

Confusion and mixed up emotions usually lead to a voluntary delay in taking action. As a new mom we hold back, delay and then frequently resent our decision to stay back full time with the baby. If you wish to resume work then make the smart choices to genuinely enjoy the journey of life with the little one. The baby will always come first as your priorities change. Make arrangements for a baby sitter from day one and groom her well. See if you can get the support of your parents or in-laws for some time. Any support from the family helps a new mum to go back to work with a smile. The wisdom of oldies comes as a blessing. Don’t over burden the senior citizens as they won’t have your energy levels to look after the baby. But their supervision and wisdom will go a long way in helping you to resume your duties.

Challenges are Galore

Once you are a mother, challenges are in abundance. Everything may look great but the sudden weather change at the time of a board meeting may play havoc. Don’t panic. Be strong and always take medical advice instead of hoping or waiting for things to change for the better. They seldom will. Even congestion can put you and the little one in a spin till treated medically. Professionally go the extra mile to stay prepared for the D Day.  Pend-ency should be done away with. Efficiency and hard work are the greatest payoffs. Even the toughest boss understands a genuine problem. Next always have a backup to face any contingency. Modern times call for team work so stay equipped with the right spirit. Be positive to receive the positive.

Take Initiative to Bring in Change

As a new mom we come across puddles and pitfalls. In fact if you will look around then you will find that so many of us struggle with a smile. Initiate change that you think will make life simpler. Put up a proposal for a crèche as a great step to motivate mums to work with a peaceful mind. It can be a make shift arrangement to begin with wherein a utility room can be made cosy and comfortable for any emergency. I know of a defence unit that made this arrangement for one of the lady officers just before a crucial conference. Nowadays many corporate houses are taking steps in this direction as a safe domain for kids of employees which mean great motivation for the women who perform well as they are peaceful.  I still remember when I was working in an international (residential) school, my daughter fell ill. Just imagine our school principal offered the comfort of her home for my daughter to take rest. This help came in at a time when my husband was away and I was all at sea. Her gesture warmed my heart. It was a huge lesson from a leader who became my role model. She helped me discharge my duties by extending help when there was none.

Taking a Break from Work

This is like the last resort. Yes! When it is near impossible to cope up with work soon after the birth of the baby then buy peace … Yes! Quit work. Take a break to enjoy with the little one. You can always join when you feel like it. A break can be very rejuvenating and many a times it freshens you up. You never know, you may get some ideas to start afresh. Join groups that can help you harness your interests on social networking sites to know that so many mums like you are able to give a vision to their goals. Get inspired, meet and communicate to start afresh…  sky is the limit. Recently at the Mompreneurs Meet 2014 Mums came in with their babies. What a cheerful aura each one exuded and how lovely the kids looked all decked up to be with their mompreneur.

Start Afresh

A fresh start comes as a blessing. Yes! It happens. My daughter was a few months old when I went on a cribbing spree. I would crib day and night for the lack of opportunities for new mums. One day I just called up the office of a national newspaper who was recruiting people for a full time job.  This was my well rehearsed speech, ‘Madam I am Geeta. I wish to start afresh after a break. I want to work as a freelancer as my baby is too small…. I am sorry I can’t join full time but given a chance…”. I was cut short and pat came the reply … “Hi don’t be apologetic about having a baby or being a mum. It is a blessing to go through this phase of life. Come and meet me with some samples. Babies are not allowed in the main wing so come with someone…” Boy oh boy I was on the cloud 9. Imagine within a week I got an opportunity to work on an assignment. Yes! I published my first article.

Yes! Parenting is like a long cruise wherein we sail on the calm seas, crooning the song of life and at other times we get caught in the rough weathers. The once welcoming waves that gently rocked us to and fro become all rough and powerful. We are tossed about all through the turmoil. Here we learn some hard lessons, feel weak and helpless like the shell that longs to be in the solitude of the sea bed; its home. We are destined to write a different lesson therefore we are thrown on the sandy beach to take a breath under the scorching Sun. Oh! How thirsty we feel when we look at the mighty ocean of life, we sigh, take another breath and know it’s time to shift focus to prioritize afresh. After all it’s important to ease stress and focus on the baby who shifts and moves in your arms.

Love you mum for being so strong and loving.

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