Hello all! I am due in Nov but already trying to figure out what to do with work and the baby after my maternity leave... I am lucky enough to be able to work from home, but my job is regular hours (8-5). I don't get to set my own. I'm in sort of a customer service roll where I need to be by the phone. I am the "speed unit" so to speak and need to process work quickly. Some days are very slow and I have lots of breaks and availability. Other days I am slammed and am at my desk pretty much the entire time. Very up and down. What I'm trying to decide is if I could possibly still work like this but with the baby? This will be my first and I have no idea what to expect. Is it even feasable to try working and not do day care? If I could set my own hours, then absolutely! But I don't, so I'm at a loss. Let me know what you all think and thanks in advance!
Re: Working from Home
Would it be any different if I could set my own hours?
Even if you do get a good napper, you never know when they're going to wake up screaming for food.
I wouldn't attempt it unless you could plan to do most of your work once your SO gets home.
I'm speaking from personal experience.
(fyi... Right now my son is waking up an hour early from his 1.5 hour morning nap, so yeah -- unpredictable.)
Like other posters have said, the baby's temperament will be unpredictable and too hard to manage with on-phone work. My first baby was really quiet and super easy from the start. I could get some writing done, but definitely not a call. They snort, squeal, want to be held, whine and need a lot of attention. But my second was crazy LOUD even if happy. Even if the baby is somehow a miraculous sleeper and you know their schedule, that could change by the week. Maybe if you could somehow do online customer service chats that require no audio - but even then, you could have your hands full.
You can make it work if you set hours when your partner or a nanny/mother's helper is there.
I work from home as a freelance writer and social media consultant and it's tough with a 13-month old and 4 1/2 year old. I've freelanced almost all of my career, and I can only do it when they're asleep or someone is here. Once I ended up having a last minute call with a client that I worked all day to make sure my baby was asleep for and my 4 year old would be watching a special movie. What happened? The call was 10-minutes late, my baby decided not to nap and was cranky, my 4 1/2 year old didn't care about the movie and would NOT be quiet. I told my client we should reschedule, but he was in his car, has kids, and said he didn't care.
The other issue is becoming a first-time parent is a major shock to the system. You need support. It's not you and your work + a baby. It's an entire new alternate realty that you cannot predict until it's here.
Have you discussed other scheduling options with your work at all?
I personally am going to play it by ear when the baby is born and see how things work for us while on maternity and then if I need to adjust my schedule I was going to discuss it with my manager. My work is very flexible with moving schedules around if needed luckily.