With the possibility of going into labor at any given moment, I thought I’d share a bit about what my plan is for maternity leave. If you’re unfamiliar with what I do and my background, you can read more about it here. I’ve said it many times before, but I wouldn’t trade being self-employed and owning my own businesses for any other kind of job or employment. I love it so much! It comes with a lot of perks, of course, but it also makes things like maternity leave a bit interesting.
I’ve been wrestling with what I want my maternity leave to look like since very early on in pregnancy. It’s not easy for me to hit “pause” on work or to take a step back, but I want to allow myself as much space and time as possible to adjust to this new role of being a mom. My plans have shifted a little bit since the coronavirus outbreak (not being able to have help come into my home), so I’ve had to re-work my expectations in the last month or so. All in all, I feel good about what Mike and I have decided on and look forward to seeing how it goes!
I’ve decided to put the shop on hold for several weeks, starting May 1st. I did this a couple years ago when Mike and I got married. We were getting married, going on our honeymoon, and moving to Virginia all within about 4 weeks, so I knew I didn’t want to have to even think about checking my inbox or shipping out orders. That worked so well for me mentally, so I’m doing that again with maternity leave. As of May 1st, the shop will still be open, in the sense that the website isn’t going away, but no orders will be able to be placed. I’ll have more information on the website, but that’s the gist of it! I don’t have a firm return date for Elisabeth Ashlie yet because I want to see how things go, but it will re-open sometime later this summer.
As far as the blog and Instagram goes, that’s a whole different beast! I’ve been working fervently over the last month or so to pre-plan content for the blog and Instagram to go live during my leave. Blog posts will be published during the month of May (and maybe into June) that have all been pre-written and pre-scheduled. Depending on how I’m feeling and how life is going adjusting to the babe, I may write a post or two “in real time” to share any updates that I want to share. But the bulk of the posts that will go up are all pre-done! I’ve got a couple room tours for you, a pregnancy Q&A, some home decor content, and other things ready. I love sharing with you all and providing (what I hope is) helpful information and resources for you, so I’m happy to still be able to do that for you over the coming weeks.
My hope and plan is to still be active on Instagram, when and how I feel is best for me and us. I will certainly update you all with news of his arrival, at the very least! There is so much pressure to constantly be active on social media in my industry, so I know that I will have to fight that a little bit, but I have a feeling that a fresh, tiny newborn baby will be a pretty good distraction!
So much is unknown. How will I react to this change and stepping into motherhood? What will the baby be like? And so many more factors will influence what my time away from my normal work schedule will look like. I may find that the transition is easy and I have time and mental capacity to share regularly. On the flip side, there could be any number of factors that require me to focus 100% of my time and attention to our baby and new life. I just don’t know! I may find myself craving something “normal” and wanting to spend some time sharing things like I’m used to, or I may really enjoy the mental break and step back quite a bit. I’ll take it one day at a time and see how I feel and what we need! I’m anticipating about 6 weeks of an amended schedule, but again, will just see how things go!
One thing is for sure, I’m so thankful for you! To be able to share and connect with you is such a fun thing for me and I value it deeply.