Interview: Life of a working mum
On a windy Friday afternoon in Berlin-Friedrichshain, we recently met up with the lovely Jessica Boehrs. The independent actress, photographer and young mother talked to us about her jobs, her pregnancy, life as a working mum, and maternity fashion.
How are you at the moment? How does it feel being a new mum?
It's great. It really is such an impressive and life-changing experience. Of course it's a bit stressful to take care of everything, but luckily my babyboy is very uncomplicated. He sleeps a lot and doesn't cry that often. Apart from that, I'm not allowed to go back to work yet - which was really surprising to me, since I'm self-employed and always thought I could decide things like that for myself, but in Germany it's actually forbidden to work during the first eight weeks after childbirth.
How do you imagine your life as a working mother in the future?
It always depends a lot on the job I'm doing. Last Tuesday for example, I went to an audition for a job which would be ideal for me at the moment: relatively high profit for a small amount of working hours. Thousands of girls applied for this job though, so keep your fingers crossed!
My boyfriend is very supportive and also gets along with the baby very well, thank God. He is also self-employed and can basically work from anywhere, which makes managing our schedules a lot easier! If he had a 9 to 5 job, things would probably be a bit more difficult.
What do you think is the most difficult thing about managing your career and a child at the same time?
As an actress, I guess it can be even more of an obstacle than for women in other jobs. Less when the child is born, but more at the moment where an actress announces she's pregnant. In other jobs, the employer is bound to provide paid maternity leave, is not allowed to fire you, etc. When you're an actress and get pregnant, however, it is most likely that you simply won't be considered for most jobs anymore. Even after those nine months are over! One of the most persistent prejudices is that the actress will get fat and forever stay fat after she's been pregnant. That's really unfair and stupid.
As an actress, how are you going to handle it if your current job involves working abroad?
I would definitely try to take the baby with me, I couldn't go abroad and leave him here. I'd tell my bosses straight ahead that if they want me for the job, I'm coming with my kid.
How did you experience pregnancy?
The one advice I can give to every pregnant woman out there: don't listen to all those horror stories!
I went to prenatal class and all the women there were constantly panicking about all the horrible things that could happen. And I thought - what does it help? Why don't you just stay positive and believe that everything is going to be fine?! You really need to shut yourself out of this scaremongering. When someone sets in to tell you a story about the friend of their cousin's sister, you just need to tell them and yourself: 'I'm going to make my own experiences'.
You're currently living in Berlin - what's life as a young mother like in such a huge city?
Berlin is so child-friendly! Way more child-friendly than Munich, where I was born and grew up. Here you can find so many offers from prenatal classes to pregnancy yoga to daycare centers and beautiful playgrounds in the middle of the city. I can't imagine a better place to live right now!
You worked as a model for mara mea's upcoming collection. What do you like about mara mea? What's the difference compared to other maternity fashion brands?
First of all: I think the clothes are just beautiful. They're created with so much love. The first thing I noticed about their products were the beautiful colours. They use great fabrics, everything is very carefully selected. I enjoy the details, the bits and bobs like the lovely lucky charms and the dip dye. And the best thing is that you can wear them even after pregnancy! In contrast to all the other maternity fashion out there, which only looks good for a few weeks and then you can trash it and buy something new again.
Jessica, thank you so much for this interview x