Welcome to the latest installment of ‘Interview With A Working Mum’.
So far we’ve had a mum who takes her baby to work with her, and a mum who is about to pack up and head off to Jamaica.
This week’s guest blogger is a mum of school age twins who wanted to stick to the career she’s worked so hard for.
First up, please introduce yourself…
My name is Maxine Speechley. I have been married to James for 6 years however we have put up with each other for 11 years. We have identical twin girls called Holly and Emily who are 5 and they started school this September. We live in Rawtenstall which is about 20 miles north of Manchester.
What line of work are you in?
I am currently a practice nurse for a large surgery in Accrington, I am also studying for my diabetes diploma
How many hours/days do you work?
I currently work 28.5 hours, which is 8.30 till 5 Monday and Tuesday, 8.30 till 1.30 Wednesday and 8.30 till 4.30 on Thursdays. I increased my hours as of October once my girls were settled in school, I previously worked 22.5 hours which was 8.30 till 4.30 Monday, Tuesday and Thursday.
Are you in the same line of work as before you had children?
Whilst I was pregnant. and when I returned from maternity leave, I was a staff nurse within the community working with health visitors and school nurses. When I returned from maternity leave I had to move to a different team as they couldn’t accommodate a reduction in hours. Between myself and husband we worked out that I couldn’t work more than 3 days as nursery cost us £800 – which was more than our mortgage payment.
How quickly did you return to work after having children?
I had 12 months off with my girls split, between maternity leave and annual leave. My girls were born at 29 weeks by emergency c-section as I went into kidney and liver failure so my maternity leave started then.
Did you want to return to work?
I love having the girls and enjoy my time with them, but I needed to return to work for my own sanity. I needed to have other adult conversations and felt they would benefit from social interaction with other adults and their peers. Also, I worked hard for 3 years to become a nurse so I wanted to continue with my career but also have it fit in with my family.
What are the hardest things about being a working mum?
The hardest thing about being a working mum is having unwell children and having to either ask grandparents to look after your children or having to ring work and explain that you’re not going to be in that day. I find that very hard as I was diagnosed with post traumatic stress disorder and post natal depression when the girls were 1 year old, due to traumatic delivery and the 9 weeks the girls spent in nicu.
What are your favourite things about being a working mum?
My favourite thing about being a working mum is that I value my time with my children and husband so much and we get to do enjoyable things together, such high as days out or meals out. It also means we get to go on holidays such as Disney World Florida which we are doing this coming summer.
What are your least favourite things about being a working mum?
Least favourite thing is the busy mornings getting us all ready for work and school, then dropping them off at breakfast club, then getting myself to work in time to see patients and rushing hometown pick them up from after school club and then making dinner for us all.
Do you have any tips for other working mums or mums thinking about returning to work after maternity leave?
Plan your child care for returning to work as soon as possible and have conversations with your boss ASAP if you’re wanting to change hours.
If you want to find our more about Maxine why not follow her on Twitter.