Business, Babies, and Breakthrough with Meghan Ely from OFD Consulting

business mental health parenting perserverance Aug 22, 2023

Before we jump into today’s episode, I want to first give you a quick intro into how we are podcasting this season. Courtney is currently taking a little sabbatical to focus on her family and rest. It is so fitting that we are talking all about work life balance this season. I am so proud of her for realizing this is what was best and what was needed. Stopping the hustle is always a little hard and unnerving, but we didn’t want to let the podcast go away, and I personally didn’t want to do it alone. Who would I debrief with? I loved our Conversations with Sisters so much – I didn’t want that to go away. I was driving one day and realized I have “sisters” all around me! People that I turn to for advice, help, or just to vent. So, I asked them to be my honorary sisters this season. And guys- it has been amazing! Fresh conversations, new vantage points, and of course- so many laughs! I really hope you all enjoy this season, I know that I certainly have!

Is guilt just manufactured?

I am so excited for you to hear our very first episode of season 2! Not only is Meghan a bad ass – but she is genuinely one of the sweetest and hardest working people I know. She loves her family fiercely and I always admired her boundaries. I was so stoked to interview her. We are joined today with Jenna Parks, a fellow industry pro who also has to juggle the career and mom life and I loved the insight she brought into this episode.

There were so many great takeaways – I could write you a book from this episode! But the one thing that made me really pause and truly reflect on as I drove away from the studio was the question – “Is my guilt just manufactured?” I shared my own story of my deepest regret of missing Henry’s first year of life. I have told that story many times. I am always validated, and I appreciate that, but no one ever really challenged the way I think about that time. Any new parent can tell you, year 1 is hard. You are so tired, exhausted, and anxious. Henry was my second, so I also had a toddler at this time. And when I think back on those first few years – I always regret not remembering anything. It was such a blur due to construction – that I have no real solid memories of that time. And while, I am still sad about it- and feel unbelievably guilty about it – Meghan really made me ask why I feel guilty.

he truth is – would that time have been a blur anyways? Having 2 kids 23 months apart is a lot. Take The Bradford out of picture- would I still feel guilty? I tell myself no – I deserve this penance for putting my family through this extremely difficult time. But let’s be real – what parent doesn’t feel guilty about their choices? I am SURE I would still feel a twinge of guilt. Maybe the guilt that I was too tired to do all the same things with him that I did with Ada. Maybe the guilt about how I gave up too soon nursing because I didn’t want to push him. Maybe the guilt about how he didn’t walk until he was almost 17 months or sucked his thumb, or, or , or…

And it really made me realize/think that all this guilt we put on ourselves. Is manufactured. It is self-imposed. It is real – don’t get me wrong. But there is no real truth in it. It is how we cope. It is how we process our choices and as judge, jury, and executioner of our choices – we decide the punishment. And for me, for YEARS, my punishment for almost bankrupting our family, moving them from a beautiful home to a small little cottage, not being there for Henry like I was for Ada, for being distracted, for being too tired, for being not my best self, for being selfish and following a dream – all of that , I decided I needed to feel bad, terrible actually about it all. That I needed to not look on that time fondly, or happily – I didn’t deserve that. I deserved to feel guilty about it all. To apologize for it whenever I can.

And Meghan challenged that – providing an alternate view on that time in my life. So the next week- after this interview, I went through all my old pictures of the kids of those few years. And I printed off 28 of them, put them in frames, and hung them in my office with the sign – “The Kids are Alright.” Because they are, and we (Courtney and I) did a fucking amazing job building this business and being amazing moms the entire time.

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