Bringing your baby to work

POME (Product of My Environment) is not only the boutique to find eco-conscious products in Paia, but also an inspiring work ethic. Mama Becky gives us insight on parenting as a business owner:

Having a baby and opening a new shop all in one year, was that planned? Kind of…we had the idea for our business a long time and decided it was best to open a shop so that our baby could come with us to work everyday. I was 6 months pregnant and the spot in Paia opened up, so we signed our lease to open in December. Turns out our son Kai was born February 5th and we opened the shop February 19th, 2016. After the first few months passed it was really great; we don’t miss any of the firsts because he’s with us all the time.

Why did you decide to bring your baby to work? With only 6 weeks of maternity leave at the job I worked while I was pregnant, going back just wasn’t an option for me. I want to be with my baby. I also want my son to be social and meet people from around the world every day. Behind our “reception desk” is Kai’s space with his nap area, toys, diapers, etc.

Should having babies in the work-place be more common place? Ya, I think it’s good for families to work together and also for your child to see you working. It should be part of the norm within the individual’s comfort zone, depending on the work environment, of course. Larger corporate companies should absolutely have on-site childcare. Way back when, it was normal to have kids in businesses with the parents; I don’t know how we got so out of touch with having everyone together. 

What’s your suggestion for the mama who does (or wants to) integrate their child into the work-place? Don’t be so hard on yourself. Take it day by day. When I have a teething, super whiny baby in the work-place, I’m going to deal with him the same way I would if I were at home. My job is no harder than that of a stay-at-home mom. Nobody’s baby is perfect, so you have to just go with the flow. There have been really hard days, but I still wouldn’t give it up. When you can have your child with you, and you want them there, do it! If you can’t be with your family at work, then take the extra moment when you get home and hug your child a little bit longer.

What has been your funniest moment in the shop with baby Kai? My husband was holding Kai and talking to a customer. I remember him looking over at me with poop on his hand, I knew my baby just had a huge diaper blow-out. He was trying to talk normal to the customer; I couldn’t help but laugh. Being a parent, in or out of the work-place, we all have those moments. At the end of the day, it seems to be more natural for people to give a helping hand with the child instead of judging.

Interviewer: Guri Bigham

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