when I first got pregnant and Lu and I started talking about the future, we knew all along that we'd want to get a nanny once I had to go back to work. and by work, of course, I mean working on Inspiralized (some people think when I say "go back to work" that that means I'd go back to corporate America - no, NEVER! fingers crossed!)
I told myself I'd take a full two months of no/little work and then I'd start to play it by ear as to when I needed to get childcare. month three I started getting back into the swing of things, posting a bit more, sharing more food related content on IG stories (not just Boomerangs of Luca - sorry for the overshares there, I'm a new mom!), and thinking about 2018 strategy.
ALSO, I was gone for most of January and will be gone for most of February. I had my sister's bachelorette party, her wedding, and now I have an upcoming HSN airing (in Florida) and then ANOTHER wedding that happens to be in Florida. so, getting a nanny in January/February just didn't make sense - we wouldn't even have time to interview one!
realizing it's time for childcare
month four, I've realized that it's time. it's time for a nanny. it's time for me to go back to working on building Inspiralized. before the baby, I'd wake up with Lu (7-7:30am) and be at my desk once he left for work (8am) and I wouldn't shut down my computer until he returned from work, between 6:30-7pm. so, I was putting in 11-12 hour days 5 days a week, which is why I've been able to do amazing things with Inspiralized - like creating the Inspiralizer, getting the Inspiralizer on HSN and sold in stores, filming cooking videos and series, writing three cookbooks, running cooking classes, sharing on social media, posting hundreds of free recipes on the blog, and running this little lifestyle site (which I hope to grow in 2018!)
it's a LOT of work and I think somewhere during the maternity leave, I thought, "oh, I can do both! I can stay home and when the baby naps, I'll get my work done." well, I quickly realized that it was impossible. not with the kind of business I'm running. especially with the older he gets, the shorter his naps are, the more awake and alert he is, there's not enough time to get anything done, let alone run a business!
even though I had always planned to get a nanny all along, the closer I became with Luca and the more time I spent with him, I guess I started convicting myself that I could work a little less in exchange for more time with Luca (and avoid getting a nanny.) I even flirted with the idea (for, like, a day) of stopping Inspiralized completely and becoming a stay-at-home mother. I am just so in love with this little baby boy, it's breaks my heart that I can't be there with him 100% of the time. but that thought track lasted a day and Lu talked me out of it, because he knows how much I love Inspiralized and how much confidence and happiness it brings me.
plus, I was feeling guilty when I'd be on my phone, checking social media messages, writing an Instagram post, responding to emails, and not being 100% engaged with Luca. now, with a nanny, the times that I do spend with Luca will be devoted to him, and I won't have to feel bad about not tending to my business! it's a win-win!
and then I went to an event in Jersey City where I spoke on a panel with other inspiring business women about being a business owner/entrepreneur! five minutes into the panel, I was empowered and inspired. I got my groove back. I felt what I have felt all along with Inspiralized: a successful female entrepreneur. I had forgotten what that feeling felt like and it was rejuvenating! after speaking for a couple of hours about my experiences and dishing out business advice to other aspiring entrepreneurs, I remembered why I started Inspiralized, why I love it so much, and why I need to continue working on building the brand and the business. it was like a wake up call!
finding a nanny
so our nanny starts March 5, the day after we get back from Florida for our friends' wedding. how did we find her? well, we were lucky to say the least!
Lu and I went on a trip to the Exumas a couple of years ago. on that trip, we went on a boat excursion and met a woman who placed nannies, assistants, housekeepers, and home care professionals for a living! she had followed me on Inspiralized afterwards and I randomly received a LinkedIn message from her over the holidays saying that she followed me on Inspiralized, saw that I had a baby, and was wondering if I needed a nanny because she had the perfect one for us! she even remembered that Lu was Puerto Rican and Spanish-speaking.
seriously, it couldn't have been a better fit. this woman is Colombian (Lu's mother is from Colombia), Spanish-speaking (she'll be speaking exclusively to Luca in Spanish, something that's very important to the both of us, but especially Lu), is a mother of THREE, two of which are twins (I feel like if you can raise twins, you can do anything!), and her current family is relocating to Switzerland and she needed to find a new family to nanny for.
after our first meeting with the nanny, we knew she was right for us. Luca took to her immediately, gave her a big wide smile, seemed happy and content in her arms, and the nanny was just incredible kind, sweet, nurturing, and during our interview, she already seemed comfortable with us. we can't wait to welcome her into our family!
why a nanny
since Lu and I were both raised with stay at home mothers, a nanny seemed like a familiar fit for us to mimic the same way we were raised and frankly, in the NYC area, daycare is nearly as expensive as a full-time nanny AND extremely competitive to get into the reputable ones (my friend who is 20 weeks pregnant already secured a daycare because she was anxious she wouldn't get into one post-delivery). plus, we have friends in the area with nannies and look forward to Luca meeting up with the other nannies and helping Luca socialize more once he's older!
also, I'm breastfeeding and I loathe pumping. I could not imagine pumping throughout the day (and I give MAJOR props to working mamas who have no other choice - you are my HEROES, and you should be given a medal and a glass of wine every time you come home from work) and I truly enjoy nursing. I knew that if I had a nanny, I would still be able to nurse Luca and have those special 20 minutes with him throughout the day that was just the two of us. if I sent him to daycare, I wouldn't get those moments, and I am very grateful for being able to work from home and have that luxury. I'll never take it for granted! of course, I work very hard to be able to do this.
so breastfeeding was a major factor in the nanny-daycare decision making process. another factor in general was that I just wanted to have more time with him! if I want to take a break from work, I can relieve the nanny and play with the baby. or, once the weather's nice, if I want to take him out for a stroll, I can. and thankfully, our nanny has worked for another work-from-home mama before, so she understands the balance. of course, once Luca gets older and is aware that Mommy is in the apartment, it's going to get a lot more difficult, but we'll cross that bridge when we get there - with more working from coffee shops, the nanny taking Luca to hang out outside, etc, etc. we'll make it work!