This post is something I am creating for all the working mommies who plan to join work after their maternity leaves are over. It has worked for me like a check-list for things which might get skipped off your mind. Returning to work after Maternity leave can be a stressful decision.
When I knew I had to go back to work my mind was always thinking on a few very obvious things like : arranging childcare , expressing feed for the time I am away from my baby. But there were a few things no-one told me and which I learnt out of experience.
So this is a list which worked for me when I returned to work and also a few I wish I knew during my first child’s early days.
Things you need to stock-up for office
Photo of your baby
I used my phone screensaver for this. I clicked photo of my baby everyday and used it as a wallpaper on my phone for the day.
While some of the moms would agree to me that this helped them pass their days with ease , some get upset and miss their babies more.
Since for the past few months I couldn’t follow a routine and ate whatever and whenever, I wanted to make sure that when I get back to the daily routine I eat healthy snacks only. So to make sure I do not rush to the unhealthy junk for snacking I pack a few healthy snack options with me.
Since I know I would not get enough time with my kids if all I do after going home is cooking, I decided to hire a help for cooking the dinner. She usually cooks dinner for us and gets the raw material ready for breakfast and lunch.
Look Good – And Feel Good
You know what were the first few comments I heard when I returned to work after my second baby “All your weight loss is gone down the drain“
But all I did was “RELAX”.
You will not fit into your pre-pregnancy clothes when you join work after maternity.
The reality is : Doctors estimate it takes 6-10 weeks just for the uterus to get back to pre-pregnancy size, but not your entire body. It took 9 months(or may be more) for your body to get to where it is today. Untimely sleep, meals and lots of stress can be blamed for it too.
Just be patient and set in a routine for yourself . Follow the routine and it will work.
Check out these tips for the best postpartum clothes, and treat yourself to a few new pieces. And after the last couple months you’ve had, you most definitely deserve a haircut and a mani/pedi, too.
If possible, schedule your return date for the middle of the week. A full week of more than 40 hours away from you will be a great difference for your baby as well as for your mind.
This is what I did: I went to work for 2 hours on a day before my leaves got over. Then I started going to work officially from a Wednesday.
Do a Dry Run
Before joining in officially, I gradually worked on increasing the time for my baby’s stay at the daycare. From just two hours on the first day to a couple of hours on the second and so on. By the time I joined work, my baby was familiar with the daycare staff and was settling in to this routine.
Meet With Your Boss
Schedule a quick meeting with your boss, if you can before you officially join work.
Discuss on :
– Any changes you need to be aware of while you were out? Like re-organizations, change of leadership, change in work timings etc.
– Try to understand your boss’s top priorities for you when you get back? This will help you focus and re-start at the correct point. Also it will help you not get into less important matter.
– Is your boss willing to let you try out some flexible work arrangements? Talk to him if you have arrangement for work from home for a few hours in a day or 1-2 days in a week.
Practice Saying No
After my first one was born and I returned to work, I accepted work like earlier and was completely submerged in work in very less time.
I was staying up late in the night, stressed out and tired, I spent very less time with her and I rushed through everything just to get away with doing that task.
I was too mechanical initially, but then I started saying no at work. Saying no and accepting that your baby would need your time more after you are home, you will save yourself from people dumping work on you during your first week back in the office.
Give Your Baby a Gift
If you’re nursing, the best thing you can do for your baby when you return to work is to keep her close to you and feed her to her heart content. Even if you are not nursing, hold the baby in your arms, it will give her security that you are not going to anywhere.
I hope these tips work for you as much as it worked for me. Let me know your experience after you joined work? How did you manage?