Hi Dee, tell us a bit about yourself - What do you do, how old are your children and what happens with your kids when you are at work?
I am a residential Interior Designer in London so my hours are all over the place. Children are now 10 and 13 but I’ve been working since they were little and it’s been a combination of nursery, after school clubs, holiday aupairs (that works GREAT - lots of teachers etc around looking for work in the Summer) and summer activity clubs. We adapt each year. It’s getting hard again now because they are getting too old for the holiday clubs and want to go out with their friends - so I may well be getting back into the summer aupair game for a while. After school they let themselves in if I am not here - but I am generally not far behind. Husband steps in at weekends or in evenings if needed.
1. One word to describe how being a WoMo makes you feel?
2. What’s the funniest experience you have had juggling kids and work?
Giving my 5 month old a hug before a meeting and her puking on my jacket shoulder - I was late already so wiped it off and draped my long hair over it. Luckily it didn’t smell as it was just a bit of milk. Luckily also I had long hair!
3. What is the one piece of advice you could offer another WoMo?
Forgive yourself - because there is nothing wrong with wanting to work and being a mum.
4. What’s the least amount of sleep you’ve gone to work on and how did you cope?
5/6 hours - can’t do it regularly. Cancelled a few non urgent meeting and survived on coffee.
5. What have you learned about yourself as a WoMo?
I’m ambitious for my daughters and I want them to be working mums too.
6. If you had a working mother’s anthem or mantra, what would it be?
Yes you CAN do it.
7. What is your guilty pleasure to combat WoMo guilt the best?
Good nights out on wine with other WoMo’s (no fear of reprisal).
8. Would you rather be dealing with a tantrum or presenting in a board meeting?
9. If you asked your children what your job is, what would they say (exact quotation if possible)?
Mummy makes houses (not quite true but cute that they think that).
10. What’s the one thing you wish you’d known before you became a WoMo?
I totally under-estimated how hard it would be. I would have invested heavily in help and saved some ££ to enable that for the early years.
11. To date, what has been your best WoMo achievement?
Juggling (albeit badly) and building a property portfolio, developing for myself and others whilst my kids were young. Adapting to my variable working hours and doing that for a while until I could get back to my day job.
12. What do you want to teach your kids about working mothers?
Respect them. Be kind to them. Ask them about their day. Appreciate what it takes to juggle two jobs - - you have a go getting mum who is 100% there for you when it matters and even though her day job will never be as important as being a mum, she needs to do it for good reasons.