How to Thrive as a New SLP Mom

Are you a new SLP mom, mom-to-be, or planning to start a family soon? A lot of us have been there and sometimes it’s not the easiest transition. In this episode, we talk about a few ways to thrive as a new SLP mom and how to navigate this balancing act!

Tune into episode 52 to learn about:

  • Having compassion for yourself
  • Changing things up to work for you
  • Overcoming “mom guilt”


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Full Transcript of Podcast: How to Thrive as a New SLP Mom

Episode 52: How to Thrive as a New SLP Mom

You're listening to the Speech Space Podcast, a podcast full of tips and resources for SLPs. I'm your host, Jessica Cassity, and this is Episode 52.

Hey everybody! Thank you so much for joining me today as we talk about ways to thrive as a new SLP mom. It is the question that I get every now and again, and I'm excited to finally sit down and take the time to talk a little bit more about this topic. But before I get started, I did want to let you know that this podcast is brought to you by The Digital SLP membership site, which is a site that features time-saving, no print, and low prep resources for SLPs. To learn more about the membership head on over to thedigitalslp.com/digitalslp.

All right. So like I said today, we're going to be talking about how to thrive as a new SLP mom. And the first thing that I want to talk about is not underestimating the love that you're going to have for your brand new baby. So please know that leaving your baby when you go back to work after being with them since the moment they were born for just about every second might be really, really difficult. And maybe even one of the hardest things you'll ever have to do. Trusting somebody else to keep your new baby safe is super scary and it can also be really stressful. So you want to plan for this. You want to make sure the day that you go back, you snuggle your sweet baby all day long and maybe build in an extra 15 minutes after you leave the first morning that you go back. Plan in like a 15-minute buffer. So if you need to stop somewhere and have a good cry, then you can do that. Just know that it's really, really common. And I think so many of my mom friends have told me that, you know, they've gotten in the car to drive off to work and they've just bawled. So like I said it's super common and it honestly, it does get easier each day that goes by and not to get off track but if say it doesn't get easier for you and something is just telling you that maybe this is not the right thing for you to do. You know, day in, day out after you've been back for a while, then maybe you need to think of other SLP roles that you can fill. And I'll touch on that a bit more in a minute or two.

The next tip that I have is to have compassion for yourself. You know, you might be sleep-deprived, shower-deprived. You're definitely going to have less patience with your students if you're not getting enough sleep right and you're not eating right. And, you know, these things are all okay, and totally normal as a new mom. Just know that you are doing the best that you can, and that this is a very stressful time in your life and a huge transition. And just remind yourself that this will pass, this phase will pass and remind yourself that you're just, you're doing the best you can. And you're doing a great job under the circumstances. So just have compassion with yourself. If you don't have, you know, the patience that you usually do, just know that things are going to get better. You're going to return to your old self. But right now it's just a really difficult time.

My next tip is to keep your sessions simple. You know, it can be really easy to want to jump back into things full steam ahead. But my advice is just to keep it as simple as possible. Reuse old materials and resources that you know, like the back of your hand. Invest in some quality, no print materials, download some new no prep materials, use online speech sites that help you save time. Pretty much do whatever it is that you need to do to keep your therapy sessions moving forward in the simplest way possible but also while still delivering quality sessions.

My next tip for you is if you are planning on breastfeeding and that is to make sure that there is a place for you to pump and also to befriend the pump. So you want to make sure, like I said, that there is a private space for you to go and pump and you want to invest in a good quality pump and a hands-free nursing bra. I'm sorry, hands-free pumping bra because you're going to be using those two things daily, if not more, and you're probably not going to want to store your breast milk in the staff kitchen. So you also want to invest in a little cooler that you can carry with you with some ice packs. So all of your efforts to pump your milk don't go to waste. And also while you might dread pumping, it can actually turn this into some nice downtime or some time that's just for you or you don't really have anything else to do. So you might want to bring a book and relax for a few minutes, or you can bring some paperwork or you could do something like catch up on your CEUs. So just use that time to take a few breaths to recenter yourself before you move on with the rest of your day. But it's funny how sometimes it starts off as this, oh, this dreaded pumping time. And then whenever you, whenever your little one gets old enough and you kind of give back that time, it can be a little bit of an adjustment.

My last tip, I touched on a little bit earlier, and that is to consider changing things up to work for you. So if you are going to your current job every day and you feel like either you're working too many hours, or, you know, for some reason, it's just, or maybe you just miss your baby so much that you just can't, you know, foresee yourself doing this long-term. You know, start thinking about other avenues because the great thing about our profession is that there are so many choices. So, you know, maybe think about teletherapy. Maybe you can work from home a couple of days a week, and if you're not already a school SLP, maybe working in the schools, that's something you want. So you can take summers off to be with your little one. You might think about just going PRN, if you're in the medical setting, or maybe even doing some kind of side jobs, like some online resource creation or teaching online courses. And then of course private practice is always an option. Probably not starting a private practice. If this isn't something that you've done before, but perhaps working for someone else's private practice. You know, there really are so many options out there for us. So you just want to make sure that you're taking the time and kind of brainstorming and re-evaluating your current situation to try to figure out what the best setting for you is at the moment.

Now, before I wrap up, I did just want to touch on one more thing, and that is mommy guilt. And no matter whether you choose to be at home with your baby or go back to work, know that only you know the best choice for you and your family, and no one knows what's best for you and your babies more than you do. You are the expert. So sadly most of us will face guilt, no matter what we choose, because at first it's hard to not feel like you're letting someone down, whether that be a person that you're working for, or whether that be your baby or your family. But just know that you are an amazing mama and you've got this and that your baby is so lucky to have you as a mom that cares about them so much.

So I hope that those tips were helpful for you today. I hope that you enjoyed listening in and as always, if you liked what you heard, please take a second to leave a five-star review on iTunes, and that helps your fellow SLPs find the show. To access the show notes from today's episode, head on over to bit.ly/TSSEP52. If you'd like to learn how you can cut back on your prep time this year, head on over to thedigitalslp.com/digitalslp. Okay. So that is it for me for today. I thank you so much for tuning in, and I hope that you have a great week.

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