563. Returning to work after maternity leave.

Next week, I am going back to work. I am so grateful that I was allowed, and that we could afford, for me to take so long off. I took a year for my maternity leave, and it has simply flown by. I cannot even begin to fathom how my baby will be one next month. I remember waddling around on my swollen feet, my gigantic belly preceding me in every room, like it was yesterday. I work part-time, as a teaching assistant, at a school just around the corner from me. The school where Daniel's pre-school is, and where he will be attending nursery in September, and where I went when I was younger. I love my job, I have always wanted to work with children, and teaching is so rewarding.

Being a TA is the next-best-thing to my goal career. When I got pregnant with Daniel, I was part-way through my teaching degree, which obviously has been put onto the back burner. I plan on returning to university next year, work-based, which means returning to work now. I am in the perfect position to do it, and feel like I have to go back because the chances of me finding another job this great is slim to none. I have worked there for two years, I did work placements before that, and I went to school there before that, so I know the school and staff really well. The fact that I only work mornings, until 1:15, and have the holidays off is perfect for the boys. I still get time with them, every day, and when they go to school I won't have to worry about childcare for half terms etc. So, basically, they are the pros for going back to work.

The cons? Leaving my boys. I have LOVED being home this last year, spending all day every day with the boys and never missing a thing. Especially with Joshua growing so quickly and learning new things all the time, I would hate to have missed anything. With Daniel, I didn't plan on going back to work at all, but was offered a job when he was 10 months, and decided to take it. I found it hard being at home all day, I was putting too much pressure on myself to do everything, and needed some grown-up time. Now, I feel like I have a good balance between playing with the boys/housework/social life, so I'm not itching to get out of the house. We have a good routine, the three of us, and I'm worried about messing that up. Though I'm sure we'll settle into a new one fairly quickly, even if I do have to be more organised.

Luckily, eventually, I have sorted out some childcare arrangements I am happy with, which makes me feel happier about leaving them, with people I trust. I simply can't afford to put them both into a childminder for the whole time I am at work - it would cost me £200 a week!! I was also super nervous about letting them go to a stranger, no matter how qualified she was. So I have sorted out a hodge-lodge of my favourite people to give me a (very much appreciated) hand. My best friend, the boys' Godmother, will be looking after them on Mondays and Wednesdays. Daniel will still be going to pre-school Mondays & Tuesdays, so she'll pick him up for me, and my Dad will pick him up on Tuesdays & head over to get Joshua from my friend Beckie. Thursdays my brother is looking after them both for me, and Fridays they are going to a childminder. I know her from our Toddler group, she is really lovely and when we went to see her last week Joshua had a great time playing with all the toys and her 2.5 year old son.

I know they will have fun, and will be well cared for, but I am still worried about leaving Joshua especially. Currently, I can't even pop upstairs or to the toilet without him screaming after me, so I know this is going to be hard a first. I can only hope and pray he settles quickly, and fingers crossed this will be a good thing for us, to sort out his separation anxiety and maybe even his sleeping! A girl can dream. I'm only actually back to work for seven weeks before the summer holidays, so it should fly by. Writing all this down has made me feel much better, much calmer and much happier, about returning to work. It'll all be worth it in the end.

Lots of Love
Momma B


  1. Best of luck for next week! So glad you've been able to sort out a child mind routine you feel good with. I've been looking at nurseries for our potential move and it's such a hard decision.

  2. Oh, good luck next week! I just started back to work and my little boy had his first day at nursery today - it was so hard for me, but he had a great time! It sounds like you have a great job to spend as much time as possible with your boys during the school holidays. I wish I had school holidays off. :)

  3. I am dreading the time when i eventually go back to work, scary stuff. My niece sounds very like Joshua,she just turned 1 today and she gets upset when she can't see her mama but funnily enough she is fine at the childminders. xx