Biz Mama: It’s Okay to Love Your Work and Your Kids

Biz Mama is a series where I’m sharing some glimpses into my life at the intersection of motherhood & entrepreneurship, you can read more here.

pink chai living raj{That’s me – head down, working away. Aren’t I lucky I travel with my own paparazzi!}

It’s been a while since I wrote a Biz Mama post, and the truth is; I’ve been super busy running my biz! 2014 has been a monumental year for us. We grew from an agency with 2 clients at the beginning of the year, to about 11 clients over the summer. We’ve also grown from a one man & one woman show, to a proper firm with four contractors, and it feels like it all happened in the blink of an eye. {Of course I’m glazing over 3 years of networking, sleepless nights, and panic attacks induced by “will we make it?” fears}.

The business growth has been amazing for our family, and we are all enjoying the benefits, but there is one by-product of success that is reserved only for me; mom guilt. I don’t even have to elaborate because all the mamas get me. While I’m trying to transition my small business to a medium enterprise, I’m still responsible for 50% of the care of two little people, and the reality is; this year it’s been more like 70/30 in my husband’s favour if we were to count childcare hours. 

AZO_1690{That’s my ‘what the what does this email mean?’ face}

Normally I would let all these thoughts bug me; but I’m working on a new normal. In my new reality it’s totally OK for Dad to be the primary caregiver. {I had that role for the first 5 & 3 years of the kids lives, and let’s be honest; sleepless nights and temper tantrums are way harder than grade 5 math – not that anyone is keeping score!} It is okay if I can’t always be at soccer games and school field trips anymore, and it’s okay if I’m focused on work a lot of the time. 

The way I see it now; this is a busy season of my life and that’s ok. I’ve conceived, carried, and birthed two children – now I’m birthing a new enterprise. {It’s hard to say which is more painful some days!} Does that mean I neglect my kids? Hell no. Whenever possible, I give them my complete attention, I schedule one on one time with them, and make spontaneous plans to hang out. However, sometimes I do work at the computer while they work independently on a project at the dinner table, and other times I do ask them to wait until I send an email or return a phone call. 

AZ1_1645{Oh hi! Me again, making chai and sending a tweet …. probably about making chai!}

I’m all for giving my kids presence and attention; but it doesn’t hurt to learn patience, and independent play. I also think that watching their mama put her heart and soul into a business project and seeing it grow is a great lesson in itself!

In closing; I don’t think there is any right or wrong way to parent – but I do think that mamas who enjoy their work, and don’t feel guilty about making it a priority sometimes get judged unnecessarily.  So if you need to look down at your phone or get some work done, I got your back!

PS: If you enjoyed this post, you might like this one that’s all about crying at work. Why yes, I do that all the time too!

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6 Comments

  1. December 10, 2014 / 8:20 am

    :-)

    Plus, let’s not forget the cool stuff and the opportunities we get as bloggers that we share with our kids! My son loves that I am a blogger. All those trips and dinners are paid for with tweets and Instagrams, and he understands that.

  2. December 10, 2014 / 9:54 am

    Great post, Raj! That is exactly what happened with us (I spent most of the time in the trenches when the kids were wee, and less than half as they have gotten older). As long as your kids know that they are loved and a top priority, they benefit hugely from having a mother who is actively engaged in her own life pursuits. Great modeling and life lessons :)

  3. December 11, 2014 / 8:44 am

    Amen! Great Post. I often find myself feeling guilty for working on my laptop over her breakfast or while she is snacking on lunch. NO MORE. xxoo

    • December 11, 2014 / 7:43 pm

      Ain’t no one got time for mom guilt! Thanks love :)

  4. December 11, 2014 / 10:22 am

    This is a great post and I don’t see any controversy here! Everyone has to do what’s right for their family and their biz, based on the stage and growth of both those things! Before baby came along, I used to work on the dining table while the other two (then 6 and 3) played amongst themselves or even joined me at the table to do their art. But things have shifted since baby came and I had to learn how to divide my attention among my work, the two older kids with different needs and level of ‘understanding’, and a baby which is a lot more physical and hands-on. This past year has been interesting but I’ve also never written so much in my life! But I recently had to learn to put my phone away because in my world, I wasn’t using it responsibly. When I could have been giving the two older kids (7 and 4) attention, I wasn’t. The balance was totally off. Right now I can sit and write this long-ass comment because they are at school and the baby is happily gnawing on blocks. As my workload increases and I find the right babysitter, I’ll bring someone on board to watch the baby during the day. That’s the next stage that I feel like I am heading into pretty quickly, and happily!
    But to reiterate, everyone has to do what’s right for their family and biz. It’s not just ok, but necessary, to love both.Thanks for sharing this, Raj! I’m going to share on my pages.

    • December 11, 2014 / 7:43 pm

      Thanks for taking the time to leave such a thoughtful comment Taslim! It’s true, everyone has to do what’s right for them – thank you for sharing too!

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