A Yorkshire based parenting & lifestyle blog written by Claire Chircop.

THE BACK TO WORK FEAR AFTER MATERNITY LEAVE.

Here I am, 309 days since starting maternity leave & I’m preparing to put my big girl pants on & return back to the adult world of employment. My KIT (keeping in touch) days are all planned in & I’m due to go back on Monday 30th September - So how am I feeling about it?



Truth: I'm pretty freaking nervous?


As a couple Dan & I decided I’d take off as much maternity leave as possible with our little girl - Knowing full well our savings account would take a hit, but also understanding that I may never get this opportunity again.
I just had to go with it, embrace being a new mama & enjoy spending as much time as possible with my little before she gets big… And right now she’s pretty darn big!


The days at home can be long (oh so long) but the last ten months have absolutely flown by - People always said they would, and I never quite believed them but they were right! It’s as if I’ve blinked and here I’ve suddenly been presented with a baby who’s about to turn 9 months old.


I have a big ass baby & the big ass responsibility of being a working mama.


If you asked me a couple of months ago how I felt about the prospect of going back to work, you’d have been met by excitement, ambition & eagerness to throw myself back into adult life. But here I am, knowing full well I’ve got to put my suit back on in a couple of weeks and pretend like I know what I’m doing & I’m hella nervous about it!


I’m nervous because I’m leaving my baby behind.
I’m nervous because I’m not in control of her care.
I’m nervous because I’m leaving her with someone who isn’t family.
I’m nervous because I’m going back to a new team of people.
I’m nervous because I’m worried I’ll be no good at my job anymore.


I’m just nervous.


I haven’t ‘worked’ (I use that word lightly, because every day being a parent is a full time job) for almost a year now & the prospect of going back is certainly a daunting one - And I know I’m not alone when I say that - The back to work fear is real!


What was once my normal, isn’t so normal anymore & I need to make it back that way. I’m going to be doing a few things over the next couple of weeks to try and make the transition just that little bit easier.


Childcare.
As we don’t have family nearby, we’ve decided to put Amelia into childcare with a childminder. We opted for this over a nursery as it offered us a little more flexibility - I found nursery’s only offered either full or half days, where in an ideal world we’d need something in between - Which is exactly what we have with our childminder!
Over the last few months we’ve been to see the childminder on three occasions however I’ve not yet actually left Amelia alone there with her & the other children - That’s coming next week! I’m having one more visit with her together & then we have another two booked in where I’ll be leaving Amelia there for a couple of hours.
No doubt I’ll be an emotional wreck, but I'd much rather build up their time together & their relationship than have nothing and suddenly leave her for seven hours.



Communication.
I’m lucky because I get on really well with my manager & during my maternity leave we’ve kept in touch in both a professional & personal manner.
Communication is key & I think it’s an absolute essential in making the transition back into work that little bit easier.
Again I’m lucky because I have the type of relationship with my manager where if I do feel like I’m struggling or if I have a wobble & feel like I’m not 100% ready (which will no doubtfully come) I know I’ll have absolutely no qualms in telling her my difficulties.


Opportunity.
I’m such a positive person & I pride myself on being able to see the best of any situation.
What I’m seeing her is the opportunity for reinvention - Just as I reinvented myself as a mama eight months ago, this month I’m going to do the same & turn myself into a boss ass working mama!
I’m going to go out shopping (hopefully on my own - but more than likely not) this week some time & pick up a new suit. I want something that fits like a dream & makes me feel like Beyonce, which will hopefully won’t be too much of a difficult task. I’m also booked in on Saturday to get my haircut with without fail always leaves me feeling amazing - The two together has got to be a recipe for success.... Surely?
The time is now & this is my time!


Routine.
I’m quite big on routine when it comes to day to day life with Amelia & I’ve got absolutely no doubt that this will continue once I go to work… Only our new routine might have to be a little more strict & refined.
I start work at 8am so have agreed to drop Amelia with the childminder at 7.30am - This should give me enough time to get to work, have a fluster & possibly even time to pick up a coffee on the way. At the moment this *should* work perfectly fine as Amelia currently wakes up around 6am however it does mean that my new working mama day will probably start around 5am… And even just thinking about it now makes me feel tired!
I’m definitely going to have to do a few practice runs before my big first day!



Even though I’m hella nervous about returning to work after maternity leave there are underlining feelings of excitement.


Excitement to get some normality back into my life.
Excitement for adult conversation.
Excitement to have purpose.
Excitement to earn my own money again.
Excitement for being someone other than mama.


I’m sure once I get back to work the excitement & nervousness will start balancing out & before long I’ll be back to my usual happy go lucky working gal (not like that you filthy lot).


Wish me luck!

Are the back to work jitters something you can relate to?


Claire.X

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