It is something normal to have emotions about returning to work from maternity leave. You just had a baby, and conflicting emotions are something common in this situation. The transitioning process will include some bumps along the way especially if you have to leave your child at a young age. Some moms state that they found more difficult to return to work after they had their second baby. Mom guilt is a common feeling young mothers have; they are anxious about leaving their child in someone else’s care. Some workplaces offer no maternity leave, and some workplaces offer short maternity leave. The chances are that you are angry about your job, but you also know that you need to work to provide a decent lifestyle for your children.
No matter what feelings you are experiencing, they make total sense. In most of the cases, women have to return to work sooner than they are ready and this is why they consider the process more stressful than it should be. Careful planning will help you avoid stress and prevent challenges.
Careful Planning Can Make Your Return to Work from Maternity Leave Painless
Focus on logistics
The fact that you will return to work will change your routine. This means that you will have to prepare logistics for two directions. You should pack the things you need to take with you at the office, and you should make sure that the baby has everything they need for the period when they will sit with the nanny at home. In case your child attends day-care near your office, you should put in your bag a breast pump and the things you need when you visit them during your lunch break. It would be helpful if you would plan your mornings an evening ahead, it will help you know exactly what things you need to pack, and it will ease your routine.
You should pick a day near the end of your leave and test your new routine to understand how long it will take you. You need to know in advance how long it will take you to get your baby ready for the day, get yourself ready and leave your house.
Hire a nanny
You should start looking for a nanny with at least a month before your maternal leave ends. You need to go through a selection process and interview multiple candidates to find the right nanny for your child. You should discuss with the nanny the schedule your baby should have your work schedule, and ask them if they can complete the tasks, you require. It is advisable to spend time with the nanny at least a week before returning to work. You should help the child transition to someone else caring for them, and the best way to do it is to spend time together with the nanny. Also, seeing her taking care of your child will bring you peace of mind because you will know that a professional is there to watch out for your baby.
Have a plan B for nanny sick days
There will probably be some times when the nanny will not be able to care for the baby because they will be sick or they will experience other problems. You need a plan B for those moments. The first thing you should know is that taking some unplanned free days from your job will not send a negative signal to your employers because you are a fresh mother. But you should also be aware that repeated free days will give the impression that you will start a pattern of absences and you should have a plan for these unexpected sick days. One solution would be to ask your parents or parents-in-law if they could care for the baby on these days. A friend or a family member is always someone you can rely on if you have an emergency. Another option is to check if it is a day-care facility close by where you can leave your child on the days when it is no one to care for them.
Wear clothes that fit you
You should plan your wardrobe before returning to work because not all the clothes you have worn before getting pregnant may fit you during the first months of motherhood. Do not try to squeeze into your pre-pregnancy outfits. It’s okay to wear one of your maternity dresses that help you feel great! If you do not have formal clothes you can wear at the office, it is a good idea to make a shopping list and purchase new ones. Also, it would be helpful if you plan your week outfits during the weekend, in this way you will not be rushed during the morning because you have no idea what to wear.
Do not let mommy guilt take over your feelings
No matter how much you love your job, you will probably not want to return from your maternal leave. It is understandable that you do not feel ready to go and you are not willing to let your child in someone else’s care. But you have to accept the fact that the nanny has done this multiple times, they are experts in caring for children, and they will do an amazing job.
When it comes to mommy guilt, you should not allow it to take you over because millions of working moms have raised amazing children. Your baby will be just fine if you leave them for a couple of hours and you come back to work. You will notice that when they grow up, they will consider you their role model. Every time you feel that mommy guilt is taking over, you should remember the reasons why you have decided to go back to work and regain your sense of fulfillment. You love your career progression, and you do not want to feel later in life that you have given up a part of you to raise your child. Do not feel envy for the mom next door that she is staying home; different persons have different views and motivations. Do not try to compare yourself with anyone else.