☝🏻How I used to feel every time Zoey (my toddler) got sick and work had to come to a standstill for the day — I anticipated total chaos. But, the reality is much less dramatic. The world goes on. Life doesn’t end. People understand.
Don’t get me wrong, I still live in fear of sick days like any working parent — but I’m learning to take them in my stride and hold my head high. I’m a working parent — and this is my life sometimes. I used to worry that it would make me seem unprofessional, or like I’m not committed to my work, but that’s not my truth so now I try to let that worry go.
Over 18 months or so of blending work and motherhood, I’ve also found a few techniques that keep clients happy.
1️⃣ Stretchy deadlines. I calculate the time I think I could deliver something — then I double it. Better to surprise a client early than to constantly push out the deadline.
2️⃣ Communication and honesty. I make it clear to clients that I’m a mum, so from time to time this happens — especially when booking meetings. If they’re not OK with that possibility, I totally understand — and can refer them to other writers who work more traditional hours.
3️⃣ Keeping it simple. I used to overexplain and offer all the gory details of Zoey’s latest bug (oops!) Now, I only tell clients what they need to know: that something has come up and I need to reschedule/that I’m away from my computer and will come back to them on X date, etc. I also turn on my out of office.
I’m sure there are other genius ways of getting through kiddo sick days — do you have any wisdom? As Zoey will be off daycare again tomorrow, I’d love your tips!