What about being a mom?

Being a mom is fantastic (most of the time), but you don’t feel like the old “you” anymore. Now, how do you deal with that?

Did you promise yourself: “I won’t change at all when baby arrives”? Did you plan to go back to work right away, travel on long-haul flights, go to the gym more often, or spend more time playing the piano? You may well manage all of this at some point, but for most new parents having a baby is a life-changing event.

However you liked to spend your days and evenings before baby arrived, whether lying on the sofa or building an empire, things have moved on. At the very least, you will have less time to yourself, and this can trigger an identity crisis. You can’t do everything in the same way, so you need to think about what is important to you, and what your priorities are.

Of course, being a mom or dad is fantastic in many ways, but plenty of parents also yearn for pre-baby days. Finding a way to reconcile the best elements of your new and old life is the best way forward. Having a baby can be a catalyst for positive change since stepping off the conveyor belt can give you breathing space to think about what you really want out of life.

When you are expecting a baby, you are the center of attention and the first few weeks are all consuming. If you can produce a baby, you can do anything, right? But fast forward a few months and life becomes more routine.

It’s perfectly normal that your baby takes priority, so your own needs and those of your partner are secondary for a while. But at some point you emerge from the newborn blur and start to think: “What about me?” If you are on maternity leave, you may not have realized just how much your work routine shaped your life.

From having a structured week with meetings and goals you’re at home with a baby who doesn’t fit neatly into an agenda and sometimes the days just seem to stretch ahead. You might find yourself feeling bored and not sure what to do with your time. Or you might find that you enjoy being at home more than you thought, which might be your prompt to negotiate shorter hours or change careers for a new work–life balance. How important is your work identity to you?

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