The Perils of Working from Home While Pregnant
At the time of this writing I will be set to give birth some time in November 2014. I must say that this pregnancy has been easy in comparison to my last two. Once I discovered my pregnancy, I found myself thinking creatively about earning a passive income online, and what my true work at home niche would be. It came as no surprise to me that writing would be the way for me to earn while raising a family. Adding to the notion was that I was expecting another child. So, that makes 3 for me plus the added benefit of working my own hours.
As I set out to redo my dance blog, begin another blog, and start a new Hubpages account I found that completing most of my writing tasks were difficult at times. Here is why.
Most women know that you can expect to have morning sickness during the first three months of pregnancy. While I had all of these creative ideas in my head I was distracted by the gross feelings in my stomach. While I was never violently ill I couldn’t eat, therefore I couldn’t think. All I could think about was how I was going to make it through the day without being sick and which foods did not get the best of me. If I did eat something it had to be something that I could not live without, otherwise I did not want it. I suffered in my nutrition while I ate Mexican food, if that makes any sense. That was the only type of food that I could handle during those first few months, and that was once a day. I would spend the rest of the day trying to keep the food in. There was no time to work.
Once I got into my second trimester, I expect to be more energetic as I did with my other two pregnancies. That was not the case. I felt tired all the time. Apparently, I needed extra iron. However, my energy never increased. I spent a lot of time researching this topic because it felt like a strange phenomenon. I spoke to my doctors who reassured me that everything was fine. My tiredness came from chasing my children all day long, homeschooling, cooking, cleaning, and working from home. Now that I am in my third trimester the tiredness seems to have increased exponentially along with my belly. The closer I get the more I want to stay in bed. Consequently, my work at home goals are being achieved much slower because I feel slower.
Have you ever heard of the phrase “placenta brain?” I have that consistently. I seem to forget a lot of things, including the ideas I have for blog and Hubpages topics. If I don’t write down my thoughts and work on them immediately, my great ideas get loss in the sea of my distracted thinking. I can become easily distracted when I have to concentrate on the needs of my family or during bathroom breaks that lead me to doing other things. Then, I have to figure out what I was doing in the first place.
Doctors appointments can sometimes put a damper in any tasks that I have planned for the day, let alone work at home tasks. A visit to the doctor will mean child care arrangements will have to be made. Thankfully, my husband helps a lot. My doctor’s office is a 20 to 30 minute commute from my home. I always schedule it for the morning because I seem to have more energy during the morning. Each visit usually takes an hour or more for various reasons. When I come back it is close to lunch time, and all I can think about is eating. My children have to eat too, so I declare it is lunch time even if I return home at 10:30am.
Working with a Toddler and Young Child
Being around a toddler and young child is enough distraction to keep you feeling like you are running on a hamster wheel. I thought that as your child gets older handling them will get easier. For some things that it is true, but there is always the constant barrage of attention drawing tactics from my children. Once homeschool is over, they are fed, and naps are taken I feel a desperate need to take a nap too. After all, I have just spent hours on teaching lessons, changing diapers and potty training. Let’s not forget breaking up fights and stopping my 2 year old from hurting himself when I find him trying to climb on something tall. It is quite difficult to catch or carry a 3 foot 2 inches boy who weighs nearly 40 pounds. My 6 year old daughter always seems to have a crisis with her hair or changing her clothes.
Scheduling permanent working hours have quickly become a thing of the past as my flexible schedule becomes even more flexible. It seems that I am making more allowances for the small nuances that happen throughout the day due to situations that arise from me not feeling the best or spending time working on math problems with my daughter. Each daily activity has to be taken into consideration as I work on articles. I now take the time to write down my ideas, if I remember to write them down. I have even taken the drastic measure of completing writings on weekend mornings. It is easiest to get some work done because that is the time my husband is home to spend a couple of hours keeping the children busy. I have realized that with the third baby coming I will need to schedule my content while I work on perfecting those posts and scheduling them to post for at least 3 months after I have the baby. Writing is the harder part of what I do; sharing that content is the easiest task. As I get settled in to a rhythm with another child I will expect to be able to write more slower as ideas come to me—probably in between late night feedings and diaper changing.
Tips to Improve Work at Home Success While Pregnant
- Write down each task that needs to be completed and give yourself a deadline.
- If at all possible, find some quiet time during the mornings or when the children are sleep to catch up on work.
- Be patient with yourself. Realize that you may not get everything done.
- Give yourself an opportunity to rest. Proper rest will help you regain focus when needed.
- If you are blogging, schedule your post to ensure that your content remains fresh even after the baby arrives.
- Never take on too many assignments. Consider taking on assignments as you feel comfortable to eliminate feeling overwhelmed.