Is it almost time for you to go back to work? Going back to work after baby is born can be a very emotional time. On one hand it’s completely normal and okay to be ready to get back into the work force and out of the house. On the other hand it’s also completely normal to be worried about leaving your bundle of joy while you return to work. The challenge comes when you need to find balance between work and family.
What To Consider When Returning To Work After Baby Is Born
You must have a doctor’s clearance that it is okay for you to return back to work. Most doctors within the United States advise waiting until 6 weeks after baby is born. While some women such as Marissa Mayar, have been known to return as early as two weeks after having baby, this is not the normal. Neither your boss nor you must believe that this is okay. It is vital to not only your physical health but also to baby’s health that you wait until a doctor gives the clear.
Will your baby be allowed to supplement if needed? While many women choose to breastfeed and should be encouraged to do so, it’s important to have a clear understanding with your baby’s care giver as to whether or not baby can supplement if needed. It’s also a good idea to discuss a feeding schedule with your baby’s caregiver. If you would prefer to nurse your baby upon seeing him/her after work will baby be allowed to cry it out to a certain degree? Having clear communication with the caregiver is important. Call the daycare or family member on your way home each day to determine whether or not baby will need to wait 5-10 minutes on your arrival before eating.
Now, you may be aware that this will be very difficult to do. Please be advised that it may not get easier for some time. It’s completely normal, even though it may not feel like it. Leaving your baby with a trustworthy caregiver does not make you a bad mother. It makes you a strong wonderful momma. Your baby will grow to be independent and happy. In addition to this you will find that your time with baby will be treasured and therefore you will have many wonderful moments together in ways that you wouldn’t have had if you had not made the decision of returning to work after baby is born. Consider having a practice run before the day of you returning to work. This will allow you to brace yourself on the first day of work but it will also give you a good understanding of just how much breastmilk your little one will need.
*Working It Out
Assuming that you were working with this company before going on maternity leave then it’s safe to say that your boss will gladly work with you to find a method that works. Discuss with him or her the possibility of coming back only half time for the first week or two as you transition into the new role or working mom. Although you may think that you are prepared to be back in the office full time it’s possible that you will be suffering from a small amount of mommy brain or sleep deprivation and therefore you might not be as up to certain task as you once were.
At first you may think that leaving your baby with a caregiver is as emotional as it gets, this may not be the case. Mommy guilt is also a real thing. Once again, it’s normal to feel it but please don’t allow yourself to hang out here for long. Just be prepared that your emotions will be all over the place and you may find yourself becoming emotional at times that you wouldn’t have thought of, such as your baby’s well care visits or during your lunch break or even when you clock out to return home. Balancing care for yourself and time spent with baby with the time that you spend at work is very important. Consider reaching out to friends going through the same thing or even to your own mother during this transition time during your life.