A DALGETY BAY business owner went back to work when her son was just three-days-old!

Nikki Paterson, who owns NP Beauty, gave birth to baby Charlie two weeks early and didn't want to risk her business by taking time off.

"I worked a full shift on the Saturday, went to see Beauty and the Beast on the Sunday and had him the Monday morning. I was back to work on Thursday," Nikki said.

She told the Press: "My business is fairly new and I only went self-employed just before corona shut down the world.

"I only have a year of books and couldn't really afford the time off.

"Maternity pay is abysmal as well, it would not even cover my bills.

"If I was off, I would also risk losing all my clients, especially after I just had a month off when I had COVID, I ended up in hospital with it."

Nikki said she was expected to give birth early, due to having a severe case of the virus during her pregnancy, but still had clients to see in the weeks before her due date.

She explained: "I woke up on Monday morning and he was born 40 minutes later, I was home by tea time.

"Because he was that bit early, I already had clients booked for the rest of the week.

"He is 12 weeks now and I've not had any time off."

With Charlie being her fourth child, she knew what to expect, and she and her partner "share the load".

"My partner is great," she said, "he's a builder and gets home just after four, I just hand off the kids to him and go to work.

"I love my job – it doesn't feel like work.

"I've worked in beauty for several years after a career change from retail, it's the best thing I've ever done.

"I have great clients who I've been seeing for years."

Now, Nikki works from 5pm most nights to accommodate life with a newborn.

Though she admits, this means she doesn't get much sleep, "that's what caffeine is for!"

"I don't mind working in the evenings but it's obviously not ideal as sometimes I don't get home until 11pm.

"My other children are older and the price of childcare is just astronomical, my family are great but they all work during the day.

"It's frustrating but it actually suits some clients better because they work during the day too.

"And I get to spend all day with Charlie, which is nice because he is still quite young, we just go on walks with the dog and things like that."