Talk to 10 different women, and you’ll likely hear 10 different opinions on returning to work after having a baby. For some women, doing so is a necessity, though not something they are excited about. For others, going back to a job they love is something they’re actually looking forward to. But for those women who do re-enter the working force after baby, no matter where they fall in terms of their desire to do so, those first few days back can still be an adjustment.
Thankfully, there are ways to make that returning to work adjustment easier—for both you and your little one.
- Find Childcare You Trust: The biggest key to reducing anxiety as you prepare to return to work is finding childcare options you feel good about. Some families are lucky enough to have grandparents nearby who are willing to take on that task, but if you don’t have that option, start looking into local daycares sooner rather than later. Ask friends for recommendations, conduct tours, and get on waiting lists whenever necessary. Feeling comfortable with where you are leaving your baby (and who you are leaving him or her with) is half the battle.
- Ease In: It’s silly to go from weeks (or months) on end at home with your little one, to diving right back into a full-time work schedule. Instead, talk to your manager or HR supervisor about easing back into the work world. Maybe you could work half-days for the first few weeks, or just Tuesdays and Thursdays at first. Easing back in will make your whole transition less traumatic.
- Break for Facetime: The beauty of our current technological landscape is that it allows you to stay connected, so use that! Talk to your childcare providers about sending you photos and updates throughout the day, and take advantage of Facetime or Skype when you find yourself really missing your little bug.
- Look for Positives: If you’re truly struggling with returning to work, it can be hard to find silver linings, but they do exist. Think of this as your opportunity to talk to other adults throughout the day; as your excuse to take care of yourself and get some Mommy time! Sure, that time is probably less enjoyable when spent at work than it might be doing something you really love, but you may find you come to appreciate it more than you ever thought you would.
- Savor Pickup Time: There is nothing better than the way little ones light up when they see Mommy or Daddy at the end of a long daycare day. Soak those gleeful smiles and hugs up; they are the reminder of how very loved you are!
Written by Leah Campbell, infertility advocate, adoptive mama, writer and editor. Find me @sifinalaska on Twitter.
This information is not intended to replace the advice of a trained medical doctor. Health & Parenting Ltd disclaims any liability for the decisions you make based on this information, which is provided to you on a general informational basis only and not as a substitute for personalized medical advice. All contents copyright Health & Parenting Ltd 2016. All rights reserved.