Guest post by Mary Davis of Everyday Baby Steps
Hi, my name is Mary, and I'm a total fraud. At my personal blog and other places around the blogosphere, I've been known to preach about how important it is for moms to take care of themselves and to take time for themselves, even just a little each day. Um, so why am I sitting here in my sweats and slippers, without a trace of makeup, with crazy hair that hasn't been maintained in three months? Because I'm a fraud. That's why.
See this picture? It's the photo I use (most of the time) for my online presence. It's a fairly decent representation of me, and I'm pleased with it. But I'll let you in on a little secret. I showered and put makeup on specifically for the momentous occasion of getting this photograph taken.
I knew, after becoming pregnant with baby number three and leaving my full-time job as a college adviser, that I would be prone to the frumpy and dumpy days of a stay-at-home mom. I even took steps to avoid it - I became a Mary Kay lady for God's sake! That worked for a little while.
I enjoyed "playing with makeup", as is the vernacular of Mary Kay culture, and had a blast learning all the fun techniques of product application. However, it was the whole selling thing that ended my Mary Kay career. I was not meant to be the pusher of pretty.
So I started working in earnest toward my freelance writing career, which actually involves quite a bit of selling as well. Selling of my skills and my work are needed in freelancing, but looking presentable is usually not. So I've slipped into the comfortable routine of work-at-home mom, getting the kids ready for school, caring for the baby, and writing during every spare minute - sometimes not even showering for days.
What happened to the woman I was? The one who took pride in her professional image? The one who had fun with fashion and considered finding bargains on cute shoes a professional sport? The woman who felt confident attending conferences stating, "I work in academic advising." I'm moving forward a little at a time toward feeling comfortable in my "freelance writer" shoes, but it's slow going. I vow, from this moment on, to work toward presenting a poised, professional appearance. I will take my new job seriously. Maybe that will help me to find my identity again. I think I'll start by going to take a shower.
Mary writes about her transition from the traditional workforce to work-at-home mom at her personal blog, Everyday Baby Steps. You can also follow her journey at Adventures in Freelancing, her community for newbie freelance writers.