As I get closer to the due date of my second child (6 weeks to go), I am increasingly excited about what’s to come. My excitement is, of course, related to the anticipation of seeing my baby girl for the first time, but it’s further enhanced because there’s no looming maternity leave end date. That ever-approaching dark cloud that threatens to ruin perfectly joyous moments with your new bundle of love. One moment, you’re blissfully snapping 1 month photos, when it dawns on you that you’re already a third of the way through your leave. You will soon be handing her off to perfect strangers and heading back to the office, where you’ll spend your days awkwardly excusing yourself to go pump in a closet every few hours. Your hormones take over and you find yourself in a puddle of tears, both happy and sad. Guiltily, you think to yourself, “maybe I just need to get out of the house for some fresh air and adult interaction”.
I recently stumbled across an article titled “Why Are 10 Million Moms Missing From the Workplace?”. This 2016 article cites studies showing that many ‘highly educated’ women are continuing to leave corporate America. In fact, the lack of flexible work options for moms has brought us to a point where 1/3 of full-time stay at home moms have earned a bachelors degree or higher. The article tells us to “imagine a world where these educated, ambitious mothers had the opportunity to choose a career path that worked for them – where they were able to bring their skillset to the table without giving up their full-time mom gig. How much are we losing by not including these women in the workforce? How many successful CEOs, gifted writers and financial geniuses are we missing out on?”. The article goes on to propose several options to accommodate this demographic, in order to retain their expertise and unique perspectives in business.
I envision another alternative, which will soon be offered by The Annex. Organizations will have the opportunity to retain this talent by tangibly demonstrating their support. The Annex is designed to be a community of professional moms, working and nurturing their children alongside each other, sharing support and encouragement to continue in the pursuit of their career goals, while continuing to be present in the lives of their infant children.
The Annex is the first coworking community designed exclusively for new moms. It is a company sponsored postpartum wellness benefit. Moms can bring their infant children with them, to a professional environment that is equipped with all of their business needs as well as on-site nannies. See TheAnnexCommunity.com for more information.
About Angela Banks
Angela is a wife, mother, CPA and business consultant who is passionate about creating life/work balance for professional moms. She is a native of Dallas and enjoys all things Texan, including burgers, barbecue and cowboy boots.