Thursday, January 24, 2013

Working Girl

Throughout my pregnancy I really struggled with what I'd want to do work wise once Iyla was here. In my heart I knew I wanted to be her primary caregiver, but I didn't know if that would be feasible financially for us. While Real Estate does allow a bit of flexibility with its schedule, you also have to be able to act at a moment's notice if an amazing new home pops up that fits your buyers' needs, or if you get an offer on a listing.

As usual, things are working themselves out despite all the worrying I did during pregnancy. I was nudged back into the work world a bit earlier than planned, due to having to help my vacationing colleague during the Holidays with my listing that HE was helping ME with during my maternity leave. Then a set of my buyers who I initially met with last summer approached me, saying they were ready to start looking. They made a point to say I could bring Iyla as needed, as they had little ones too and understood the world of a working mom.

So slowly and gently things are unfolding. As it stands now, I plan to take on clients on a case by case basis depending on price range & location. I'll give preference to clients who I already know and have a trust relationship with, who understand I have a little one. New referrals & business I feel I can't personally handle will be referred to colleagues for a referral fee (I've already referred out 2 new buyers in the past month). So far this seems to be working... though it is definitely a challenge! I can't just sit down to shoot off emails at any random time, as Iyla is strongly preferring to be held a lot these days. I have written so many emails one handed- laboriously typing, beginning the messages in the morning & sending them off late afternoon. And getting out for showings requires some creative planning & help from colleagues. I've already paid one colleague hourly to head out to show a house on a weeknight, and am also taking advantage of BC babysitting on Wednesday nights and Saturdays.

On Tuesday I had a company kick off meeting in addition to a closing, so Ms. Iyla Grace accompanied me to work. Here's how we both felt about that:

She slept through the first half of the meeting, but was up in full fuss mode after that. I had to step outside & eventually sit on the office bathroom floor to nurse her.

I had planned to head over to a friends' house between the meeting & closing so I could get Iyla out of the car seat, nurse her, & have lunch myself. Upon arrival to the house she let loose again with a lot of screaming/crying, and for extra fun she peed all over right when I took her diaper off and also had a small spit up (which NEVER happens). Poor girl was really out of sorts on Bring Your Baby to Work Day. Luckily she calmed down for my closing, and I made a mental note not to stack on more than one event per day with the little one.

I've written before about cutting out dairy- something the Pediatrician actually said she didn't think I needed to do. So last weekend I decided to do a small experiment and had a bit of cheese in addition to a whole milk cappuccino (heaven!). Monday & Tuesday I had an insanely all-day fussy girl on my hands, totally out of her norm. Was it the dairy, or just a growth spurt? It is frustrating to not know for sure, but it was enough to convince me to STOP experimenting and lay off the dairy again.

I've been keeping Iyla swaddled throughout the night with no diaper changes this week, so she can get used to a 'through the night' routine. If she stays sleeping until at least 3am we are in great shape, as her first sleep is ALWAYS the longest, followed by bouts of 1-2 hours. So if she wakes at 11:30, we are up every couple of hours until 7am (this happened the night before Iyla came to work with me, making us both a little extra grumpy).

One extremely bright spot this week? BC published a blog entry to Iyla he's been working on since her birth. Reading it absolutely melted me, and I invite those of you interested to check it out:

Ok... back to work now, since Iyla is finally taking a good nap! It's crazy how productive I've become in 1-2 hour increments these days. 


  1. Going to have to read the rest of BC's post at home - too many tears for work! So sweet of him to write such kind words. Balancing work and motherhood is something I'm dreading. It gives me hope to know that you are finding balance.

  2. Peds are so weird about the whole dairy thing (even my uber crunchy one), there's a lot of proven research out there about diary affecting babies and as a mama of a baby with a dairy issue I think it's crazy that pediatricians don't recommend it as something to try JUST IN CASE when someone presents them with a colicky baby! My over the top granola pediatrician who believes food is medicine didn't even think it was worth it for me to cut out dairy and see if he had an allergy...I will never understand that, she could have saved me a few weeks of hell!!!
    Anyway, good luck with cutting out dairy and good luck going back to work!