Saturday 9 April 2011

Return to Work After Mat Leave


Well everyone told me the build-up is worse than the reality and how right they all were...

Walking around the office I felt like I never left and everyone made me feel so welcomed and valued - was wonderful and like a tonic.  A much needed tonic.

The train though felt odd.  For 18 months I have been a special case either travelling with a baby inside or on the outside.  Travelling alone felt VERY odd.  As I put on 7kg (due to Xmas and winter hibernating) one lady even offered me a seat! Oh dear!  And that didn't happen when I had a HUGE bump...

So how was the week...?

Tuesday I left home at 7:10 and Aaron woke at 7:08 crying, so I cuddled him for 2 minutes and left him with Dad which was hard as he had not yet stopped crying.

Wednesday I left home at 7:10 and he woke at 7.

But Thursday he must've been more settled as I left at 7:10 but he did not wake till 7:40.

Normally I would breatsfeed him back to sleep but the husband couldn't do that ... and as Aaron is bottle fed too I hadn't organised myself to express.

Monday night he took till 12:30 to get to sleep which was crazy.... but Tuesday night and Wednesday night it was 10:30.  After a busy week he was asleep by 9:30 Friday night, probably because he got a lot of fresh air Friday.... BUT we slept in, both of us, till 10 a.m. Friday... so you'd think he'd then stay up late, but no, we both needed it.

I got smiles and giggles every evening when I came home.

Luckily hubby was off this week so he dropped him at Sandra's the 3 days at 10 a.m. and picked him up Tues at 1 and Wednesday at 3 and Thursday at 1.  Wednesday was the only day he did not go to his Mum's after, which meant Tues and Thurs I had to meet them there after work, when all I wanted to do was come straight home.

The week went really well, but it was hard to detach from Aaron.

Tuesday I felt a bit brain numb with so much to take in but by Wednesday I was working at full speed and achieved a lot in the latter 2 days.  My mat cover was with me all day Tuesday.

All 3 days I got to work at 8, leaving bang on 5 the first two days, but stayed till 5:30 Thursday, and did have the BlackBerry on all day Friday replying to some emails.

I am determined not to become a workaholic again though.

Every night I packed all of his bags for the next day.  I am glad he started off with half days at childcare which was a gentle start for him and the way I wanted it to be.

It was only during the week that I realised the advantages for me.  I wasn't walking down the road like a pack horse early morning and wasn't collecting him, so it was a gentle start for me toooo.  Next week will be closer to reality with me collecting him, BUT husband will drop him, and he has him all day on 13th.

I was so very upset in the run up to returning, like it was the end of an era, BUT it wasn't nearly as bad as I expected, and I think Aaron had a good week.

I've never been good at delegating and delegating my biggest creation, my ultimate responsibility was the hardest thing of all.  But I have survived to tell the tale.

I am so glad Aaron's nearly 10 months and that I didn't go back at 6 months which WOULD have been too soon for both of us.

Liska x


  1. I remember having to leave my eldest in childcare for the 1st time. They had taken him from me but I was holding 1 of his little feet. As we came to the end of the handover I heard the words 'If your going to go to work you need to let go of his foot'!!! It was hard at the time but nice to get a bit of independence back x

  2. Glad it all went ok and wasn't as bad as you expected. I think children always love their Daddies and are all smiles when they get home so why not for the Mums too? Also noticed you are going to cybermummy, excellent it should be a really good day :-)

  3. Children are always more adaptable than their parents think they are. A few get very unsettled in childcare but that's normally a sign if it persists that the setting is not right for them.

    When I went back to work after babies, I valued the head space it gave me.

  4. Liska, I have been meaning to comment since you tweeted me yesterday and I read the post but didn't have time to reply. I am so glad your first week went better than you thought. The guilt of leaving your little one can be so great it's blurs everything else. I know what you mean by the end of an era, that was bothering me! but nothing stays the same and it just means you have moved onto the next chapter. Much as a loved mat leave, you do get to a point where you need to do something different. You will probably start to feel better in yourself now and yet you never would have imagined it! :-) xx

  5. I'm so glad that things are OK with work and the childcare! I just read you are going to Cybermummy...I'm going to meet you Yay!!!! xxx

  6. As I said on twitter a few days ago I'm so glad everything went well for you - I'm so happy as I was thinking of you xx


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