As many of you may know, I recently became a mom, and words cannot explain the joy.
Giving birth was the most difficult yet rewarding thing I have ever done in my life. After delivery, I spent the next few days getting acquainted with my little man and all the new experiences that come along with being a mom: breast feeding, sleepless nights, and my newly unwanted mommy curves.
In Corporate America, depending on your company’s policy, women are normally given 6-8 weeks of maternity leave to bond with their new bundle of joy. However, when you’re an entrepreneur, there’s no such thing as maternity leave. Your time off is more like 6-8 days. When you’re the boss there is no one to cover for you, so it’s back to work and that’s if you ever stopped working at all.
When it was time to get back to the grind, wrapping my mind around the thought of leaving the most important person in my life so soon was gut wrenching. For a while, I was able to work from my home office while I fed, held and nurtured my son. But, I knew I would eventually have to leave the house—and him—in order to also fully nurture my business. Meetings couldn’t wait, and bringing my son with me was not an option.
It was time! I literally cried myself to sleep the night before and throughout my first days back to work. By the third day, I was crying less. And by the end of the first week, I realized that being the best mom meant being the best me. Adding mom to my resume doesn’t mean turning into Mrs. Brady, it simply means making room in my life for a new chapter. Now, don’t get me wrong, I’m not saying it’s going to be easy. This is my biggest and most challenging project to date. But, I’m going to take it one day at a time and jump over the hurdles as they come.
Running your own business can be so rewarding, and the perks are incredible. But, the hours can be unpredictable and your days can be extremely long. I do as much as I can from home, but the way I see it, I now have two full-time jobs that I need to put every ounce of effort into.
I’m only a few weeks into this thing so I’m no expert, and this new job as a mommy can be a bit intimidating. So for now, my only advice to new moms is to trust in yourself. You’re the same person you were before the baby—just a bit rounder. Take it one day at a time and trust that the same skills that helped you to become successful in business will also help you find the balance between work and home.
But, while you’re figuring everything out, it’s OK if your briefcase also doubles as a baby bag.
Yandy Smith is a music management powerhouse and co-founder/CEO of Everything Girls Love, a lifestyle, Web publishing and fashion brand. With valuable experience collaborating alongside entertainment heavyweight Mona Scott-Young at multimedia conglomerate Violator Management, and later, Monami Entertainment, she has worked with music industry greats including 50 Cent, Missy Elliott, Busta Rhymes, LL Cool J, and Jim Jones.