Well, here I am at the end of my maternity leave…how has it gone by so fast?!? Technically I’m not supposed to start back until the following week, but there is a conference starting on Wednesday that is in town that I need to attend to get CPE credit. So next week we are starting her in daycare for half days on Monday and Tuesday and the full-time on Wednesday. Cue the tears…I’ve finally gotten to the point that I’m okay working outside of the home, but I hate working 8-5. If I could work like 9-3 or something like that, I really think I would be super okay with that. This is something that I am just praying about and hoping God will open a door for me to be able to do. Anyways…I’ve digressed.
Back to end of maternity leave thoughts…I have enjoyed every minute of this. I know it’s probably my last baby so I have soaked up all the cuddles I could. This has been such a more enjoyable leave than my first…just on a personal level and also from experience and knowing more what to expect. With that being said…I had pretty high expectations for this leave and I guess I should have realized not to expect to get everything done that I wanted to get done. I wanted to:
Expectation: Learn more about photography and practice with my DSLR
Actual: Did not happen. I did purchase a training course off of Udemy and watched a few of the lessons, but never did get to experiment any myself.
Expectation: Clean out my closet
Actual: I got about three-fourths of this done and hoping to finish this by Wednesday.
Actual: Did not happen. I did enroll for a free month of Barre3 and was able to do it a couple of times, but that’s about it. It started getting too hot to take the baby out to walk.
Expectation: Work on blog, prepare advance blog posts, work on editorial calendar and blog a lot while on leave
Actual: Did not happen as you can see.
Expectation: Start a consistent quiet time
Actual: Did not happen. It is hard to set a consistent anything with a newborn. You are on their schedule. That’s all I have to say about that.
Expectation: Love on and snuggle my baby
Actual: Happened!!! In my opinion, this is the most important thing I could have done on my maternity leave and I accomplished it! There is nothing better than just sitting and cuddling your baby. I have no regrets.
As I was making that list above I started getting down on myself about all the things I expected and didn’t do, but then I started thinking about all the things I did that wasn’t on my radar at the beginning of maternity leave like starting my little flower garden, spending way too much time on Instagram and Facebook, writing all the thank you cards for baby gifts, watching too much Netflix, reading books, cooking a homemade dinner most nights, cleaning up my One Drive and transferring things to iCloud, etc…
I did a lot and the best thing I did was to love on my baby and nourish her. I have pumped and breastfed her this whole time and that in itself is a full-time job I feel like. So here it is the last of my maternity leave and I’m headed back to the real world starting tomorrow. Never again will I have this much time off to just spend with my girls and if I dwell on that to long I get down, but I have to remind myself…we are preparing for their future and we are able to take better care of them with my insurance benefits, etc…I have a great mommy type job. I have wonderful retirement and insurance benefits and accrue great sick/vacation time and am very thankful for my job. I have a feeling this will be a post I refer back to a lot to remind myself of the positive aspects of being a full-time working mom.
Are there any working moms out there? How do you handle having to leave your kids daily? Do you give yourself a pep talk daily as well?
Until next time…keep it simple.