Literally Working From Home. With a Sitter.

2013-07-15 10.30.08Today I realized that I can probably no longer leave home to work. Physically – at 34 weeks pregnant – my body can’t handle getting ready to go out and then sitting and typing for 2 hours. Even with my doctors approval to go out and work for a couple of hours (I’m on moderate bed rest), I have to know when to stop.

It’s crazy how I simply can’t handle it, the pain is almost unbearable in my hips and back by the time I’m done. Props to all the moms who do this every day until the baby is born. Seriously. I can barely handle getting dressed without having to lay down to breathe after.

This presents a bit of a problem with our sitter here 3-4 mornings a week. I love to have that time to work, the quiet, the chance to have a full amount of uninterrupted time to get things done. I simply can’t do that right now, and this pregnancy takes priority over it.

However, I still have work to do. It’s nearly impossible to get it all done with Bella up, or even during nap. I am continually interrupted and end up feeling awful that I’m online so much those days. So today, my sitter and I agreed that I’ll stay at home and set up a work space in my room. On my bed. All professional like. :) One of the great things about working from home on the computer is no one can see me.

But I don’t want Bella to behave different because I’m home, or our sitter to feel like I’m listening in from the other room. I also don’t want to hear them and wonder if I need to go out or check on anything. I trust her completely.

So here’s how I plan to work from home. Literally.

  • Sound machine. I’ll crank this thing up and be able to work with no major interruptions.
  • Computer lap desk. We have one with a thick pad under, so I can be on the bed and the computer is on a flat surface.
  • Get ready beforehand. I don’t want to have to walk out 5 times to grab things I forgot on my desk.

I’m not totally sure what to do about “leaving” as Bella usually sees me off. The first few times with that could be really hard, since she’ll probably know I’m in the other room. If I can get her used to it though, in a few weeks it may be the ideal situation for me to be at home with the baby while the sitter is with her.

Does anyone else work from home with a sitter there? How do you make it work with your children knowing you’re home?

6 Comments

  • Kristin says:

    My husband is a stay at home dad, and I work from home twice a week. If I have a busy day planned I make sure to get in the office and close the door before my son is up, and I do my best to stay out of their way. My son usually gets distracted and forgets I’m around. Also, my husband takes him to the library, park, etc., which gets them out of the house for a while. Sometimes my little guy finds me and insists on crashing my work zone for a bit, but we make it work.

  • Suz says:

    No advice, but your plan sounds like a great one!
    Suz recently posted..Vampire BabyMy Profile
    Twitter: suzstreats

  • With my firstborn, I was still working full-time as a computer engineer for a Large Computer Company. After maternity leave, I worked at home four days a week with a sitter taking care of the baby, and went into the office one day a week. I did that for four months and finally ended up quitting my job (which I had been at for 12 years) because I just didn’t have the work/life balance that I wanted.

    I did have a dedicated office at home and came out to nurse the baby and for meals. But I still found myself very distracted and wanting to check on him. The sound machine idea is genius! Wish I’d thought of that. Honestly, the days I went into the office felt like a day off because I was focused on just one thing (work). I also didn’t take into account the benefit of the drive to/from the office. It was only about a 15 minute drive, but it still helped me to mentally transition to/from work. When I worked at home, I went straight from work mode to mommy mode, and I found that pretty stressful. But it may be different with an older child.

    I did work from home the last couple weeks of my pregnancy, and laying on the couch with my laptop on my big ol’ pregnant belly ended up being the most comfortable position for me.

    Now with two active boys (ages 4 and 21 months), I sometimes lock myself away in our room for half a day on the weekend while my husband watches the kids so that I can do app development or blog stuff. And yes, sometimes the kids stand at the door screaming for mommy. It helps to have something for them to do so that they’re too distracted to want me. I have quiet time boxes for my older boy that help with that. I also put away certain toys that I pull out only when I need them to be occupied for a bit, so it ends up being a treat for them. They also have a Nabi tablet with tons of educational apps that they both use.

    And once, when my parents were out of town at a time that I needed to get a lot done, I stayed at their house for the weekend so that I could work as much as I wanted without distraction. I’m definitely going to do that again.

    I pray that you have continued health during your pregnancy!
    Leslie @Geek Mama recently posted..A Woman’s Work (It’s Not What You Think)My Profile

  • Becky says:

    Did this last summer with my then 18 month old. It was wonderful!
    My suggestion: have a ritual to go to work. In my case, we would all (babysitter too!) walk down the driveway. Then we would walk up and they would walk around the back of the house and come in the kitchen while I dashed in from the front and hid in my office.

    I also explained that I would be home and working. We already had the don’t interrupt when Mommy is using the stove rule and just expanded it.

    Anything she wanted to tell me the sitter would add to a paper to let me know.

  • Jamie says:

    This is how I worked from home when the girls were born. I worked in my room with the door closed and my sitter knew she could text me — either when the babies needed to eat — or when she needed help. A 21 month old and newborn girls could be a handful…

    I did this again last summer and it worked out really well. It takes a bit of adjustment and trying to be less aware of the sounds of the home — but it’s definitely doable. :)

    Good luck as you finish up your pregnancy! Hopefully you’ll feel better and full of energy soon!
    Jamie recently posted..I could make excuses…My Profile

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