The day I told my boss I was pregnant was a strange one. I’d landed my dream job as editor of Cosmo magazine just three months earlier and my feet were barely under the desk when I weed on the stick and saw two lines.
Blink. Blink blink.
Two lines. OK. Right. This is happening. Now. Shit.
It took some time to process. How could something so enormous as having an entire baby with all the seismic aftershocks that would reverberate through my life be reduced to some wee on a stick?
I didn’t tell my boss until the 12 week mark and by then, I’d had some time to work out my approach to the upcoming collision of work and a baby. It was this: ignore it. Not the pregnancy, I was down with that and quite enjoyed it actually but I saw no reason why it would affect any other aspect of my life or personality. Motherhood wouldn’t change my career path, I’d simply do both. Business as usual.
Some may describe this as denial but it wasn’t. To deny something you have to know what it is and before you have your first child, you have no clue what’s ahead. It’s a heady mix of naivity and foolhardy optimism.
Your first pregnancy is when women and men make confident assertions like this:
“I think a baby should fit in with your life not the other way around”
“We’re not going to become like those baby-obsessed couples who can’t talk about anything else”
“We’re going to just put the baby in a sling and travel. How hard can it be?”
[INSERT LOLZ HERE]
I probably said all of those things when I was pregnant with my son but none so laughable as the maternity leave plan I presented to my boss immediately after telling her I was pregnant. “I don’t really need any,” I announced as she tried to keep a straight face. “I’ll work right up to the end and then take a few weeks off but I’ll come into the office during that time and I’ll be available every day from home. You won’t even know I’m gone!”