How I found myself after becoming a mom by going back to work

This post was created in partnership with Kids & Company.

mother reading to children

When I became a mother I felt lost.

After the dust had settled, my nipples healed and the excitement with round the clock visitors died down, I realized that my identity had been stripped away from me.

This was it, the end all, be all moment I had been fantasizing about since childhood… I was a mother.

First time mother

But then why was I filled with such resentment?

Don’t get me wrong, I loved my baby, and I really didn’t experience any postpartum depression with my first pregnancy in the very beginning, but something felt very off.

I was going to be a stay-at-home mom. That was it, end of story. Watching my own mother raise her four kids with such pleasure and fulfillment, I was sold.

Motherhood was my end game.

During my pregnancy I took my last train into the big city for my pretty amazing Interior Design job, and said goodbye to a traditional career.


But as weeks turned into months, and months turned into years, and one baby eventually turned into two, I increasingly felt myself fade away.

I was the shell of the person I once was. My days were filled with routines, caring for my children, while constantly watching the clock. What was wrong with me? Why wasn’t I thriving?

mother of two

As time went by, I eventually realized that I didn’t love a lot of the stay-at-home mom activities some of my friends cherished. Guilt began to set in, and I felt like a fraud.

When year three rolled around, I started to get real with myself and admit that I was pretty deep into a depression. My husband would walk in the door from work at the end of the day and find me pacing the halls.

Something had to change.

It was time to face my biggest critic and re-evaluate my path, including what my life was going to look like and most importantly, who I was.

The truth was I had no idea who I was.

The me before kids had different priorities, friends, interests and values. As I looked at myself in the mirror, I didn’t recognize the person looking back. It was time to find out who that person was, despite how scary that process might be.

After a lot of thought I finally decided that I did want a career outside of my home, which then set off a new type of guilt. I felt guilty that motherhood wasn’t enough for me, and I felt like I was betraying myself and my kids by deciding to take a different path than the one I had so clearly thought I had wanted.

It took me a while as I worked through a bizarre grieving process of letting go of being a stay-at-home mom, and reframed the ideals of motherhood I had pictured in my head for so long.

I finally realized that my new path and sense of balance would ultimately make me a much happier mother and wife, and no less of a mom.

Happy mom

After going back to work, I felt a new sense of self emerge. I wasn’t the same person I was before having kids. I was a new and improved me; a stronger person, a person full of confidence and maturity who had faced their fears and reinvented who they were.

Now eight years, four kids and many career changes later, I am thriving, balancing family life and work life while running my own business.

at a conference

Although some days my house looks like a tornado went through it and my to-do list is impossibly long, I’ve never felt that sense emptiness again.


I definitely don’t do it all and it does take a village. I think the biggest factor of making your own work/life balance fit is finding the right childcare for your kids.

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Kids and Company

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Kids and Company

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Disclosure: This post was sponsored by Kids & Company. While compensation was provided, all opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not necessarily indicative of the opinions of Kids & Company.

I Am Still A Person Despite Having Children

Mother of four kids in colourIt took me years to realize it. But I am a person outside of being a mother.

As young as I can remember, I had baby fever. I would mimic my mother of four, while she cared for my baby sister, I would even pretend to breastfeed my dolls. I thought becoming a mom would fill a hole in my heart. That I would be completely satisfied by caring for my own children.

I still went to college and got the fancy big city career, but in the back of my mind, I knew that this was just temporary… until I became a mother.

before kids

Kid-free and carefree

When I was finally pregnant with our first, I would daydream the entire train ride in and out of the city each day. I wouldn’t need anything else. I would stay home and bake, read stories, go on mommy playdates, do bath time and have a beautiful home cooked meal on the table for my husband when he came in the door from work each day.

My husband supported my dream too. So much so, that we put all of our savings into two investment properties, and he worked two jobs, his day job and taking care of our investments, so that I could stay home with our kids.

We welcomed our son into the world and it was time to live my dream.

Only, my dream was not at all what I pictured. My son was not the happiest baby. Don’t get me wrong, he was a great sleeper, and when it was just the two of us, he was fairly content. But add another person to the mix, or dare go out, and he was miserable.

These sensory issues, along with a language delay, eventually became a problem we had to address. I became a warrior mom. I had left myself behind in that train, and I gave my entire being to my son.

But, I didn’t like reading books, especially when he would want to switch halfway through. I dreaded bath time, it was a chore. I slowly stopped going to mommy playdates, partly because my son didn’t enjoy the chaos, and partly because I was bored of talking about my kid to other mothers.

When we found out we had an oops, and another baby was on the way, I didn’t know how to feel. I was in shock. I knew I wanted more kids, but I felt like I hadn’t really nailed the mom thing yet. I was still in the trenches and didn’t know how to get out.

pregnant with my second

My second pregnancy flew by, partly because I was full of anxiety

Three years after becoming a mother I was a shell of a person. I had no identity, other than being the person who cared for two children. I was definitely not the same person I was before having kids.

My husband would come home from work after the sun had gone down, and I would be pacing our upstairs hall. I wanted to scream “get me out of here!”

This was a pivotal point in my journey to becoming a person again. I began to search for a new path. Not my old path, not my mother’s path, or my current path, but a new one. A path that would only fit me.

It took me three more years, one more career, two failed businesses and having twins to get to my custom motherhood path, where I am today. My sweet spot.

I am a part-time stay-at-home mom, full-time entrepreneur. It’s my perfect fit.

attending a conference

Attending a conference

I now know that each mother’s balance and path is different from each other. Some mothers do love every minute of being home with their children. Really, I know some! Others need a stimulating career that may keep them out of their home. We are all good mothers, just different.

But all of us need to establish who we are as a person outside of our kids. Giving ourselves completely to our children will not fill that hole in your heart. There has to be a balance. Every mom has their own unique path, and it is okay to change your direction if your journey isn’t fitting you.

I am a person

You won’t be the same person you were before kids. Trust me, the new person you are is stronger, more caring, empathetic and driven… because you are also a mother.