I have been fascinated by the reactions that people have had to me when I was on maternity leave, when I was getting ready to go back to work, and now that I am back at work. I find that some people are very judgemental about how they expect families to work. Well, I’ve got news for you everyone, we’re all different, we all have different needs and that is one of the amazing things about us.
My aim is to share the stories of families of all different types and spread the word that we are all playing a #BalancingAct to get through and raise our little people the best way we can. Let’s celebrate the diversity between our families, let’s not judge each other.
So, this week it’s over to Katy from What Katy Said.
I am Katy and I am married to Mr F. We have two little girls- Little G who is 3 and Baby L who is almost 1!! Mr F is my best friend and my little family are my absolute world.
2. What was your job/position before you started your family?
I was a full time teacher before I had Little G. I trained as a primary teacher and for 6 years I worked in a school in Borehamwood. I did 3 years in Year 1 and 3 in Reception and I loved it! The children I taught came from a mix of backgrounds, many needing love and support as well as being taught their abc’s.
3. What was your work-life balance like?
Teaching is life and your life is teaching. I don’t know any teacher that is able to balance their home life well! People think our job is 9-3 but I was getting to work for 7.30, working through my lunch, getting home by 6 and doing planning and marking on evenings and weekends. This did not leave much room for a social life or a home life!
4. How did you find being away from work when you were on maternity leave?
I loved it!!!! I know it isn’t for everyone but I was swapping a day with 30 children to stay at home with my very own precious baby. Don’t get me wrong, I had days where I got lonely but I loved every single second!
5. Have you returned to some kind of work since having baby and how did you come to that decision?
I always planned on returning to work when Little G was 9 months old, however when she was 4 months old I had a massive breakdown and realised I couldn’t leave her. I handed my notice in and never looked back. 3 years later and now having Baby L, I have finally returned to work. I only do supply teaching at 1 day a week as I could not even begin to entertain the idea of working as a full time teacher with 2 young children. The money I earn keeps us afloat as our savings were beginning to dwindle. I will find a full time teaching job when Baby L is maybe 8 or 9 and they are a little bit more independent.
6. How (if at all) has work changed since you returned (if you did)?
It is exactly the same in regards to the actual day to day job of teaching as children are children. However, the difference between supply and permanent is amazing and suits me perfectly. I get the pleasure of teaching without the hassle of planning, parents evening, meetings and classroom maintenance!
7. Describe your work-life balance now in 3 words.
Easy. Balanced. Perfect.
8. Would you change anything about the family and work balance that you currently have?
I am so lucky that I have found the perfect balance. I actually am enjoying working so much I may increase my days once Little G starts nursery in January but then I don’t want to miss out on quality time with Baby L. We shall see.
Website: What Katy Said
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For all the previous posts, see the #BalancingAct page.
If you think you’d like to get involved in this feature and share your story, please leave a comment, tweet me @mamavsteacher or email me firstname.lastname@example.org.