Many mothers have to make the decision to return to work after maternity leave. Contrary to belief, this is not the easiest thing to do, and many mums don’t even want to consider it. They do it because they need to bring in the money for their families. If you’re one of those mums making this transition from maternity leave to returning to work, here are some tips to make it that little bit easier.
Don’t jump straight from spending every waking moment with your little ones to going back to work. You need to give yourself time to adjust, and it will work out much better for your little one. Start by trialling a few hours and then move to a couple of days a week until you have to leave your little one to five whole days away from you.
This doesn’t need to be day care. Letting your little one spend time with another family member while you get the time alone could really help you with the transition.
Think about all your childcare options. Could you afford a child-minder who will only look after your little one, or is there a nursery that comes highly recommended? Are grandparents an option?
Once you have the best childcare option for your money, you will be more at ease. You’ll not be nervous about whether your little one is being looked after properly or not.
Once you’re at work, make your time at home just about family. Don’t be tempted to bring work home, unless you really couldn’t get through it in your day.
Spend at least one day a week with no work at all and just relish in the time with your little one. If you can’t leave work at work, do it after the little one has gone to bed so you spend as much time with him as possible.
If you want to breastfeed your little one, there is nothing wrong with pumping the milk. Just make sure that your childcare facility has a way to store this—this will be something you want to check before you choose a certain centre or person.
It helps you continue to feel close because you will have to go through the pumping.
Use your little one as a motivator when you’re at work. Have a picture of him on your desk to remind yourself why you’re here. Remember you’re working to provide for him, not because you want to be.
You want to get through your day as effectively and as thoroughly as possible, so you can spend more time with him and do special things when you’re at home.
Sit down with your little one and create a schedule with him. He can’t tell the time and probably won’t be able to help, but making it colourful will attract his attention.
As he gets older, he’ll pay more attention to his little schedule and will cherish the time he spends with you.