Being pregnant is not easy and being a pregnant entrepreneur who works 12+ hour days mostly in intense summer heat just adds a whole layer of difficulty to the experience. Just as every pregnancy is different, every entrepreneur is different too. We all run our businesses differently and we all have different pregnancies.
You may be in different pregnancy/mommy groups online – some generic and some photography related. Having those types of groups for support is so damn wonderful. Having people to share similar experiences with can really help ease some of the anxiety and uncertainly associated with the whole progress of, you know, growing a human.
The one thing that I want to put out there into the universe is that when you’re looking for advice in these types of groups, please take it with a grain of salt. You do NOT need to do what other pregnant photographers do. It’s not a competition.
Just because someone else shot full day weddings solo until 39 weeks doesn’t mean that you have to. If you want to stop working in your third trimester, that’s okay! If you want to hire a second shooter AND assistant for all your weddings and still stop in the third trimester? That’s cool. You want to work until you’re 39+6? That’s cool. You do you. You know your body and you know how far you can push yourself. If your body is telling you that things are getting difficult, listen to your body. Better yet – listen to your health care professional. If you communicate openly with your healthcare professional and explain to them what your job is and how physical it can be, they’ll also advise you or when they feel you should be starting to take it easy.
Just because you hear about another photographer mama pumping during weddings doesn’t mean you have to. If you’re opting for bottle feeding because the thought of pumping while working is overwhelming then that’s okay! A fed baby is what’s important.
If you see other photography mama’s talking about taking weddings 2 weeks after their baby is born and start feeling bad because you were planning on taking 3 months off, don’t! You do you.
We are all different. We all support each other but we should not be in competition with each other or let ourselves feel like a lesser person because someone else is working longer, taking less time off or barely stops working at all. We’re all making little tiny humans inside of us – that’s hard enough! No need to create extra stress for ourselves by comparing ourselves to others.