If you are one of the lucky mum’s out there that gets to enjoy a full 9 months or in some cases a full year of maternity leave returning to work is a prospect usually met with fear. In any case a stretch of time off work, can provoke this feeling in even the most confident of us all.
It’s a fully terrifying prospect as not only do you have to navigate flexible working negotiations, childcare options, you also must deal with the crippling fear of separating from the small human you have worked so hard at keeping alive over the last few months!
There almost certainly will have been numerous changes within the business while you have been away, so much so that you could almost be starting a new job from scratch and feeling like the new girl again.
This blog is to let all new mums know that they are not alone!
I’m lucky that I have an amazing group of friends that between us all have 16 children (soon to be 17) that there seems to be nothing they haven’t faced! (Our WhatsApp group is easily more knowledgeable than Netmums!) This time I decided to turn to them again for their wisdom on this most dreaded subject:
- Start to practice what your routine will be before you go back – to experience any pitfalls prior to starting back
- If you have the option to start childcare a little early, then do it! The worry of leaving them for the first time and trying to concentrate on those first few days is too much for even the strongest multi-taskers!
- Prep as much as you can the night before! Clothes, lunches, bags etc.
- Breastfeeding mums: try not to panic as you will navigate what works for both you and baby
- The fear and dread are way worse than the reality of being back!
- It takes time to get back into the swing of things, but it does get easier
It’s the same sentences that you have heard before. They aren’t re-inventing the wheel, but they are mums who have been through it many times over to know it gets easier and better.
But, most importantly don’t suffer alone, speak to friends and family if things aren’t working and you are struggling. If those drop offs are a nightmare, speak to your childcare provider to work together to ease this period. Most of all communicate with your employer, they can’t help unless they know the issues and fingers crossed, they can be receptive enough to make the transition easier!