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Please come and tell me how you've coped with a stressful job and a pregnancy

(8 Posts)
OhGood Tue 06-Nov-12 17:51:35

I am 5ish weekish. Considering taking on a hugely stressful busy deadline-ridden project that will involve a 5-hour round-trip commute three days a week.

Plan B would be to turn this down and look for smaller jobs that I can do from home. No guarantees I will earn much, if at all, though.

Pros:
Amazing project will do me good on CV, contacts etc
Will be earning

Cons:
I am sooooo tired
Will spend 14+ hours a day chained to desk/train etc at least 3 days a week if not more - hard to fit in exercise, had pretty bad back and hip issues last time, would like to be fitter this time round
I got appalling morning sickness last time and facing that on a train = hell

So how do you cope? Any tips? Reckon I should just say 'sod it' and stay happily at home pottering with small jobs?

WendyWillow Tue 06-Nov-12 18:01:01

How long will the job last for?

I had a very stressful job, however not your level of commute. I knew it would finish at 20 weeks so was content to just work and sleep for the duration, I bought a home Doppler to reassure myself baby was okay considering 7 day weeks and anywhere between 10-14 hour days.

Now have one project running 2 days a week and another starting, probably about another 2 days, glad of the change of pace now.

Supportive other half is also a must!

OhGood Tue 06-Nov-12 18:41:55

Job will run until I am admitted to labour ward, if past experience is anything to judge by.

(Actually that's overdramatic. I'll stop 4 weeks before. DD was 3 weeks early.)

I am also worried about DD, and concerned I am not going to be able to give her all the stuff she needs.

DH is brilliant, though will be starting new job (hopefully) and has been working from home and picking up a lot of slack. When he is in an office, I will need to be far more on top of stuff.

loveschocolate Tue 06-Nov-12 19:21:34

Sheer determination and luck. There were times I was willing the phone not to ring when on-call in the evenings as there was no way I could have gone into work. In retrospect I should have taken it easier early on but wasn't until I started showing at about 25 weeks that people became more sympathetic. Guess it depends on how much mental and / or physical stress the job involves.

TwitchyTail Tue 06-Nov-12 19:39:24

Will it only be three days a week? ie will you have the other four days to rest and recuperate, or will you still be working the other two days in a less demanding role?

I worked full-time in a busy/stressful job with terrible sickness from week 6. It wasn't the pregnancy itself that was the problem, it was the nausea and vomiting! I coped by telling work colleagues very early (like, at 7 weeks), so they could understand that I was ill and doing my best rather than just lazy. They were really sympathetic and nice. I didn't find hard work a problem, but commuting was a nightmare, so I arranged for work to come to me as far as possible rather than travelling to it.

It's the commute that worries me about your plan rather than the hours, but you know yourself best. Another thing to think about is how it would be if you started it and had to give up - would that affect your reputation and prospects more than declining it from the outset?

MrsJellybye Tue 06-Nov-12 20:12:48

I work a 60 hour week or more, am 31 weeks preg, have a 4 year old and am a single mother. None of this was Plan A, I hasten to add. However, I love my job even though it is v stressful and I'm well paid- certainly well enough to be able to buy in a lot of support like a brilliant nanny/housekeeper and a cleaner. Without them: not possible. With them: anything possible, although I hate being away from DD1 and am currently collapsing into bed as early as poss these days. But as others have said, it would be the commute that killed me. I taxi into and home from work and I would not have the physical energy to do it any other way. I'm also getting a bit long in the tooth, which probably doesn't help grin...

What support would you have on the homefront, other than your DH who sounds like he could have his own hands full once in an office?

33goingon64 Tue 06-Nov-12 20:28:46

I was running a very stressful project over the course of my pregnancy (first DC) and although at first it seemed very daunting, I was actually grateful for the distraction of the work being so intense as it stopped me dwelling AT ALL on how I was feeling physically. I just made sure I had a bottle of chilled water and sothing to nibble on at all times (including during meetings) and my mat leave came around pretty quickly as I was so busy. Then I relaxed and enjoyed the last month. Having said that, not sure I would opt for it again with any future pg, now that I have DS.

OhGood Tue 06-Nov-12 22:54:32

MrsJelly I salute your stamina. I have a wonderful and flexible childminder and DD adores her. Otherwise, zip on the homefront support - no family nearby. Also, DD now clearly could do with some more stimulation, and I need to move her to the little preschool here. Their hours are 9 to 12. How utterly not useful is that. I also think I will be piling pressure on DH. Argh. Balancing act.

Twitchy good point about what if I had to give it up. I have been thinking about it and I think you know what if it got so bad that I had to stop then they would just have to lump it. I mean I am trying to go in with my eyes open - but am so early on, still no nausea etc and it's hard to remember how bad that was...

But yes, I might be just to busy to worry about any of this. Just go into coping mode, like 33. My barrister friend had it worse. Couldn't eat in court! And lots of time on her feet. I least I can lurch off to the loos whenever I need to.

The commute is the problem.

Thank you all so much for your thoughts and experience. Will have to sleep on it.

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