Surviving an Unpaid Maternity Leave

Stress is everywhere in today’s hectic society. From finding and keeping a job to paying bills on time to providing for a family, there are a million reasons to be stressed about money. And now, studies are showing increasing evidence that mental and physical health are linked — meaning our worries are wearing down our bodies.

The good news is that once people pay down debt and become more financially stable, they report feeling generally happier and healthier. Symptoms like muscle tension and digestive problems seem to lessen when people don’t have to worry about money. So start paying down debt and saving as much as you can — your mind and body will thank you. Not sure where to start? This infographic from Self Lender gives some ideas in the form of self care tips to help combat money stress.

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My motherhood duties required me to take two months of unpaid leave, and of course that dragged the inconvenience of staying without an income for awhile. I’ll be starting work in a week and I have mixed feelings about it, I’m glad because I love working and staying busy yet I’m anxious about leaving my daughter. I’ve actually considered quitting my job and being a stay-at-home-mom but part of me doesn’t want to accept that. Being on an unpaid leave came with stress which I mentioned earlier, here are some of the ways that helped me survive those months:

  • Saving Money

I mean it’s an obvious thing to say. I managed to save enough money to pay for my car installments for those two months.

  • Consider using paid off days

During my pregnancy days, I’ve been saving up my off days so I can make my maternity leave longer and get paid each month.

  • Ask Family Members for Help

I’ve depended on my husband for probably most of the things I needed, obviously financially. Don’t be afraid to ask family members for help whether you needed someone to help you babysit or lightly used baby supplies.

  • Take a Temporary Part-time Job

I like making friendship bracelets, they keep me busy. I decided to sell them on Instagram and it’s been helping me through the weeks thankfully.


What are your strategies in surviving unpaid leaves ? I would love to know what do you think.

 

 

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Goodbye 2018

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I’ll pretend I didn’t disappear for a whole month … Seriously though, I felt that I needed a break from blogging while I start adapting to my new life as a mom of two. I promise you it gets easier, just needs a little bit of time and I’m planning to post about it in the upcoming weeks.

Like last year, I wanted to sum up 2018 in one post. This year, I began writing about parenting and videogames more than beauty related posts which I’m planning to get back to in 2019. I normally don’t focus on views and traffic but beauty posts did attract more views. Along with few guests posts that got published, I had my first sponsored post which was very exciting to me. It opened up new opportunities for me as a blogger and it motivated to work on my blog in more of a professional level.

I tried new subscription boxes:

Speaking of YumeTwins, I won’t be posting December box but I’ll post January box when I receive it and get back to blogging again.

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on December 9, I celebrated my 29th birthday marking 2019 to be the last year of my twenties. Not going to lie but thinking that I’ll enter 30 soon is intimidating and makes me feel old, but not in a bad way.

What are my plans for this blog in 2019 ?

Well I’m planning on going self-hosted and taking blogging more seriously. I’m also thinking to rebrand my blog theme-wise with a new header and icon designed by my favorite artists to fit this new persona.

I also want to thank my readers and followers for making my blog have a purpose and existence, thank you so much for the support and here’s to a new year of hopefully success and new lessons.

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Am I a Blogger ?

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I’ve been blogging for two years now, I don’t know when I started calling myself a “Blogger” but really who is a blogger ?

a person who regularly writes material for a blog

While some people wouldn’t consider it a real job, it actually generates an income. Because of the last part of the previous sentence, some people think it’s easy to sit home and post on their blog while money will begin to pour to their account. Obviously it’s not that easy but it’s doable, along with paid opportunities as well.

I started this blog as means of an outlet for my postpartum depression and I ventured from there to post about variety of topics, honestly I didn’t think of myself as a blogger. According to most articles you’ll read, they’ll focus on something called SEO and it’s like rocket science to me. I tried understanding it but I think I’m just slow. Because of that, I didn’t see myself as your typical blogger. I still used my blog as a personal space for me and I guess in the blogging community that would be called “niche” or more of my brand.

Being a blogger has been my self-improvement method, it requires me to be a photographer, a critic, a story-teller. Creating content is never an easy task, we bloggers constantly wondering if what we publish would be good enough or enjoyable for the readers. Sometimes numbers of traffic and views would make some obsessed or stressed and it’s definitely not healthy. I’ve fallen to this trap before and I’ve been trying ever since not to compare my blog stats with others, I write whatever I want without sticking to a niche for example calling myself a Mom Blogger who’s supposed to post about parenting and motherhood only.

My point of this post is, it’s okay if you want to blog without categorizing yourself to a label. It’s okay to try to take on blogging opportunities even if you think your blog doesn’t have that many followers or you’re not good enough. As long as you call yourself a “Blogger” you are considered to be a creative person since you create content.

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5 Things To Do While Breastfeeding

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It’s 3 a.m. and I’m sitting as straight as possible so I wouldn’t have any backache after I’m done feeding my child, I’ll still doze off few times. I try to reach my phone sometimes just to keep my eyes open while she’s done but that doesn’t always work, I always find myself dozing off all the sudden. Since feeding time is getting longer, I thought of ways I can keep myself occupied while breastfeeding and maybe keep me awake at night.

  • Watching YouTube and Netflix

Probably the easiest thing to do, open the apps from your phone and just watch a random video on YouTube or catch up with your favorite TV show on Netflix. I started watching Chilling Adventures of Sabrina recently and I’ve been enjoying it during feeding time, since the episodes are an hour long, I continue watching the episode throughout the day.

  • Reading a Book

I thought of setting for myself a goal to read at least 15 minutes every day because I stopped reading ever since I cancelled my subscription to OwlCrate, so I downloaded the Amazon Kindle app on my phone and got few free books since I have prime. I’m currently reading Suicide Forest by Jeremy Bates and I’ve been enjoying it so far, I highly recommend it if you’re into horror novels.

  • Talking to Friends

In my first pregnancy,  I went through postpartum depression and I’ve gave myself the label “Isolated Parent” because I’ve kept myself isolated under heaps and heaps of house chores, neglecting myself and my well-being. This time I’m keeping my social life, chatting with friends online or giving them a call. It helps releasing some stress, also venting and complaining with other moms.

  • Gaming

This one is tricky as I found gaming using a laptop would be hard when you play a game using keyboard and mouse because one hand would be free for gaming but the other one would be supporting the baby, so I’m suggesting a controller for this and using a nursing pillow to help support the baby and also help you keep your back straight.

  • Feed Yourself

Being a mom can be hectic, taking care of babies, cooking, cleaning and doing laundry, and like me you might forget to eat. While feeding the baby, how about feeding yourself as well and of course drinking plenty of water to stay hydrated throughout the day.

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Kindness

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We celebrate World Kindness Day on November 13th. It’s a day where people set aside their differences and practice love and compassion. There are many ways to show kindness, as simple as a warm smile or helping someone with their groceries. But what is giving kindness if you cannot teach it to others? Allow your little ones to join in on the event and practice kindness together. That’s why Personal Creations has put together printable random acts of kindness for kids.. From helping the environment printables to simple acts of kindness, these easy and adorable printables are the perfect activity to give back. For more inspiration check out the blog post here.

One of the first things our parents teach us as we grow up is being kind to others, I remember my parents telling me “Treat others how you want them to treat you” and I lived by this principle until I realize it’s actually flawed. Not everyone going to treat you with kindness regardless how nice you are to them, so I think you should be the better person and be kind without expecting something in return.

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get those cute printables from: https://www.personalcreations.com/blog/random-acts-of-kindness-for-kids

Teaching kids about kindness can start from saying “please” and “thank you”, to give and take. Being a parent, it starts with you being a perfect example and role model for your kids. Remember to encourage sharing and let them help around as its an act of kindness, and of course you could reward such behavior.

Don’t forget to be kind to yourself as well, try to take 5 minutes for you. Breath and sit in a calm place for while…

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Types of Visitors … That I Don’t Like

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In the past three weeks, I’ve been quite hectic trying to balance my life with two kids. With a new family addition, comes greetings, gifts and visitors. It’s something I can’t really control, a lot of people came to visit me and of course we are talking about family members, friends even neighbors. I’m grateful don’t get me wrong but there are certain types of visitors that I cannot tolerate.

  • The ones that shows up without a warning
    I absolutely hate it when someone just shows up like that without letting me know, and it happened plenty of times while I was sleeping in my first week after giving birth. I’m really tired and barely sleeping from the baby crying along with the aches that comes after birth from stitches and back aches. I’m supposed to wake up and smile for them when I’m supposed to spend my time resting and healing ?
  • The ones that come at wrong times
    I hate when guests texts you that they are coming at a certain time because that’s convenient for them only not for me, for example couple of guests came early in the morning. I’m supposed to bathe my baby and then feed her so she won’t cry while I go to take a shower and be ready for those guests. Sometimes I can’t be ready on time if my baby wants to feed longer or randomly cries because she needs cuddles and hugs, and that stresses me out.
  • The ones that stay for too long
    I’m already trying to manage my time in dealing with two kids, some guests don’t understand that I cant sit with them for long and it gets awkward when I leave to feed my daughter and they just sit there in the living room apparently waiting for me. Keep your visit short and understand that I can’t be with you for long when I’m needed by my child more.
  • The ones that like to comment about your choice of the baby name
    Mostly older people would do this, they’ll comment about the name you chose for your baby like their opinion is very important. I feel names are more of a personal choice between the parents and others should understand that.
  • The ones that keeps commenting about the baby

    “oh the baby is crying, it must be because she’s hungry”
    Thanks for telling me, I didn’t know that

    Those know it all just irritates me, clearly stating the obvious. I know my child has colic, I know she’s crying because she’s either hungry or her diaper is dirty, or her tummy hurts. It may sound silly to others but it does irritates me for some reason.

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Games I Played While Waiting For Labor

Waiting for labor can be nerve wrecking, you’ve reached the end of the line and you have to be patient for few more days while you already feel you’re just done with this whole pregnancy and miserable. I’ve been praying for every contraction I feel to be more stronger and painful so I could be done with this, I’ve read numerous articles on ways how to induce labor and obviously failing in every one of them. Nothing really worked for me and I was just fed up, I’ve given up and said “you know what, my daughter is going to be a stubborn if she’s that comfortable inside and doesn’t want to leave yet

To ease my mind off labor and just wait for it to naturally happen, I decided to game more whenever I feel a contraction is happening whether it’s false or real. So here’s the list of games I played religiously while waiting for labor.

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There’s something about those simulator games that triggers your brain into addiction, I’m sure of it … based on my science. House Flipper is a simulation game which lets you buy wrecked houses where you can repair and remodel then sell them for profit, and so on. The concept is pretty simple but I found myself addicted to this game, I enjoyed remodeling the houses, painting the walls, installing floor tiles and getting creative with the colors and decor of the rooms. It’s a great game to spend time on, I highly recommend it.

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Every article you’re going to read about this game is going to compare it to Stardew Valley and rightfully so, just add a graveyard to take care of and a massive checklist to do which makes the gameplay very long. I won’t say I love this game, I just like it. I have this weakness against pixel art games, and Graveyard Keeper is just gorgeous I won’t deny it. The music is what attracted me the most, it’s very soothing and calm that I had to complement the creativity infused in the tracks and ironically the composer thanked me and followed me on twitter. I know this game isn’t exactly everyone’s cup of tea and it has mixed reviews on Steam, but I would honestly recommend it maybe less than Moonlighter but it’s a good game.

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If you played World of Goo and Little Inferno, you might be familiar with this game. I’m all for games that challenges you with puzzles but sometimes they make me feel stupid even thought the answer is pretty obvious, that’s how Human Resource Machine made me feel. I studied Software Technologies so I’m accustomed to programming flow, and that’s what this game made me feel basically writing pseudo codes for a program that include numbers. It gets frustrating at times but it helped keeping my mind off of labor while I played it.

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