Wednesday, July 27, 2011

being a working mum ...

When Jacob was born my life was thrown upside down ... not in a bad way by any means but his arrival forced me to do something i had been wanting to do for a long time. Since our arrival here in Germany i had been employed at Chilis on base as a server & a bartender. Not the career i had in mind as a twenty something photographer with a degree but it was the best i could do. On the plus side it paid for my equipment, workshops & the studio. But photography is my love, my passion & what i want to do with my life i just wasn't ready to take the leap. & then we throw Jacob in the mix, the realization that i didn't have day care, that it was time to really be a family & that i wanted to see my son grow up. So here i am, a stay-at-home-mum following my dreams.

I asked what people wanted to read about on my blog & one of the responses was for me to talk about being a working mum. I admit i've only been doing this for a couple of months but this is what i know ...

... it's not easy but it's incredible rewarding! I've learnt to edit with one hand & a sleeping baby on my shoulder. There are times when i will put him down (thank god for the car seat, the bouncer & more recently the bumbo) but nothing beats a sleeping baby for precious moments.

... i'm learning to work around his schedule. Thankfully i was blessed with an incredible chilled out baby, he's so happy & content. When i was 5 months pregnant i made the decision to set up a studio in my home o i can shoot boudoir & the occasional child at home without worrying about a sitter. My little munchkin has sat happily in the corner whilst i photograph women in their underwear. Such a lucky little boy right?

... i only schedule shoots every other weekend. One of the things i missed out on when working at chilis is time with my husband, weekends away & more travel opportunities. I can now set my schedule (to an extent you know uncle sam is always going to get in the way), i can work one weekend & spend time with family & friends the next.

... i've had to take my son on a location shoot with me ... the downside to being out & about is that i either have to schedule these shoots when my husband is off work or when i can get a sitter. Now it's not hard for me to get a sitter because i have some wonderful friends who love my son i just hate imposing on people. But occasionally my son is going to have to come with me & i can only hope the client is as wonderful about it as this one was. Plus the fact my son loves being outdoors & it's summer makes it easier though i can't lie i'm not 100% focused on the client (the down side). 

I know as time goes on my thoughts will change & practices will increase. As Jacob grows i may get to a point where i need to hire a sitter to take care of him for a few hours so i can focus on my work. The thing about working from home is that as nice as it is to set your own schedule, be able to work all hours & not worry about office politics we don't always focus the way we should, like editing one handed because i have a sleeping son. Before he arrived i could sit down & work my way through a shoot, not worrying if i didn't finish the editing process until the wee hours of the morning. Now I need to make sure i'm in bed at a decent hour as is Jacob. 

But i'm not fitting everything in around my chili's schedule & i have noticed that i am more focused on my photography. I'm loving what i am doing, & not tired from dealing with the stress that came from chili's. I can work at my own pace, spend time with my son & i feel (for lack of a better word) more fulfilled as a result. This is the life i want, the dream i had & my happy ending. 


  1. Such a sweet picture! I enjoyed your post. I am still trying to learn to balance between being a mom and owning a business.

  2. i'm SO happy that things are working out for you, your family AND your photography! xo!

  3. Laura, this is amazing. I'm really happy for you. Your making your dream work for you. I wish so much that I could do the same with writing, but that is the cost of Southern California I suppose.

  4. I love to read this. You so deserve it. You've worked hard and it's not always been easy. Enjoy!

  5. Your photography is stunning Laura it shows how hard you have worked to get where you are today xx

  6. so lovely to read are settling into motherhood quite nicely. xoRobin