Welcome to Meet the Working Mum Interview. Today we meet Carrie Wootten. Carrie works in the creative and digital sectors and also blogs over at My Circle UK.
If you have missed any of the previous interviews, or if you are new to this series, check out all the other Meet the Working Mum’s.
An intro and a little bit about you, your family and where you live.
Hi, my name is Carrie. I’m a full time working mum who lives in Chelmsford, Essex. I have a partner called Scott and a little girl, Isla, who is now 16 months old.
What do you do for a job? Is it what you have always wanted to do?
I have spent the last twenty years in the creative and digital sectors and am lucky enough to have travelled around the world to events like the Cannes Film Festival as part of my work. I am currently supporting businesses who are developing AR / VR products.
What was your motivation to return to work?
Money! Sadly. If there had been another solution to balancing the books, I would have taken it.
How many hours do you work a week?
I’m full time, so 40 hours. Although I am extremely lucky and can work from home 1-2 days per week.
Do you have to travel far from where you live to where you work?
Chelmsford into London – as all commuters know, there are good and bad days! It takes about 1 and a half hours each way though. And this can feel exhausting!
If you use public transport what do you do to pass the time on your commute?
More recently, this has been learning about blogging. But social media is up there and reading…..quality time to read is pretty rare these days!
What do you do for childcare? Does this work for you?
Isla is in a nursery and she loves it! She is so stimulated there – they have such a range of activities both inside and outside, that I wouldn’t want her to be anywhere else.
What does your morning routine look like? What do you do to get you all out of the house on time?
It’s always rushed! If I’m working from home I have a bit more flexibility, but I’m still at my laptop by 8:30 am. If I’m commuting in, I need to be showered and ready by 7 am in order to get me and Isla out of the door by 7:50 am. My partner quite often works funny hours, so the drop off and pick up are mostly my responsibility.
What do you like about being a working mum?
The freedom. Sounds like a contradiction doesn’t it?! I schedule my own meetings, my own workload and can arrange my week accordingly. I also feel valued, useful and that the work that I am doing is worthwhile.
What don’t you like about being a working mum?
Ohhh – the quality time with my daughter. Cramming everything into a weekend can be so hard. I’ve just got back from a family holiday and I’m already missing those precious times together.
What would you change? Hours you work, commute you have to make etc.
I would prefer to work part time if I could. I’d have a balance of working and earning some money, as well as being able to spend some more time with my daughter.
What three tips would you pass onto a mum about to start back at work?
1: it takes a little while to find the balance again. You’re so used to just concentrating on your child / children after their arrival, that getting into a rhythm that is utterly different can feel totally overwhelming. Take each day as it comes.
2: To plan. Everything. My partner and I have a joint diary, so we can plan everything in our lives. I often have to work late, and with his odd hours as a freelance lighting technician, we couldn’t live without google calendar now!
3: To remember that you’re doing it. I remember thinking that it was all just too much and I wasn’t sure how I was going to get through any of it.
But at the end of each day, you have done it. Another working day has been achieved. And slowly, this becomes normal and soon enough you’ll be a dab hand at being a working mum.
For fun show us a picture of your work handbag.
I think the most unworkable thing is that there is just too much in it!!
Thank you so much for taking part in the Meet the Mum interview series Carrie. It sounds like you have a busy work life but for you it works. Very intrigued about the work you are involved in, it must be fun seeing all of this innovation literally come to life.
If you would like to be featured in my Meet the Working Mum series send an email to:- firstname.lastname@example.org