I had my first child when I was 21 years old. I will never forget the feeling that I had dropping him off to Daycare when he was 6 weeks old, because I had to return to work. It was an awful feeling… I missed my baby tremendously and all I could think about was wishing I was able to keep him myself and still maintain an income. The worst part of the whole ordeal for me was that I needed to stop nursing him and put him on a bottle. I loved the bonding experience of nursing. I tried breast pumping, but it never worked for me.
My working hours kept me from him for 10 hours out of the day. I worried about him becoming more attached to the baby sitter than he was to me. I made every effort to spend quality bonding time with him from the moment I picked him up, until I had to put him to bed at night, which was usually later than earlier so I could have extra time with him. This decision was not good for me, as I was usually very tired every day at work and my job required that I pay attention to details. But my reality was that my body was at work, but my mind was with my son.
When I got pregnant with my daughter a little over a year later, and my then husband and I separated when I was 3 months pregnant, I made a decision that I was not going to have that experience of dropping another baby off to daycare again. I was a single mother, whose priority at that time was being the best mummy I could to my children.
So what were my options? I needed to find a profession that I could do from home, that would allow me the ability to me mummy first. When I was 6 months pregnant with my 2nd child, I decided to do a 6 week course that would give me the skills that I needed to be able to work my profession of choice at that time. This was in 1991.
I was raised by an entrepreneur father who constantly preached, “The reason I do what I do is so my children will never have to work for anyone!” I say that I was ‘groomed’ to be an entrepreneur. Even though his constant rants drove me crazy when I was growing up, I had to admit a long time ago that I was oh so grateful for his entrepreneur influence in my life. His influence and example gave me the courage and belief that I too could be successful on my own.
So, I have been an entrepreneur since 1991 and I would not have had it any other way. Yes, many days it was challenging building successful businesses from the ground up, but I am grateful to say that the work and effort was 100% worth it. Not only was I able to do something that I loved to do, rather than something that I “had” to do, I was also able to be a mummy who was present whenever my children needed me, and able to attend all of their activities.
My son played basketball, my eldest daughter played basketball and ran track and field, and my youngest daughter was in theater and music. Being an entrepreneur afforded me the opportunity to schedule my work around my children and their extracurricular activities. To this day, I feel that being able to do this played a major part in the amazing connected relationship I have with my children, now 26, 24 and 20. As a matter of fact my son, who now plays professional basketball internationally, expressed to me his appreciation and gratitude for me attending EVERY ONE of his basketball games. He said that he is the man that he is today because of me (tears of joy).
Being a ‘mumpreneur’ may not be for everyone, but if you feel a strong desire to have your own business so that you can be a better mummy to your children, I highly encourage you to step out and allow your heart to guide you. Like they say when the student is ready, the teacher shows up. Know that whatever you desire has a way of finding its way to you, if you want it badly enough.
BE Love, BE Power!
Denika Carothers ~ The Damn Good Mummy
Need some support in your mummy role? Click here.
I am a lover of life and a lover of people. When we learn to connect in our heart space, love will be the driving force behind all we do. BE Love, BE Power!