Going back to work after having a baby has been one of the hardest things I have ever done. I thought that I would be fine – I work from home so how bad could it really be – right?
Here is what I learned.
- It’s not easy.
- Allow extra time and practice your morning routine a few times before you have to actually go into work. You don’t want to be late on the first day back to work.
- You don’t get a break. Work. Home. Sleep. Repeat.
- You have to make sure to take time to step away and give your mind and body a chance to relax.
- The anxiety is REAL. I am only a floor away so I can’t imagine all the mommas that have to leave their kid for the day but I can hear him when he cries and it kills me. I know he is learning new things and I’m not there to see it. I worry about him constantly.
- Keep a planner handy. There are so many things that go through your mind and you have to stay focused. This has helped me write down all the things I need to do or handle or think about when I’m done focusing on work.
- Make sure you have someone to talk to about it. Other mommas get it. Don’t try to act tough – you are human and you have feelings.
- Coffee is your new best friend.
- You don’t get to devote your whole life to work anymore. I was the type of person who would do anything to get something done – regardless of the personal sacrifice (time, event, etc.) but having a little one that I have to get home to makes it much harder to keep working late into the night. I have to take a break and I have to be okay with that.
- Don’t be afraid to speak up if you can’t work all day and all night – if you don’t you will end up missing out.
- Your priorities will change and every minute will count. I know I used to spend time during the day organizing files and cleaning things up just to make them look nicer but now I have to let some of that go and force myself to focus on what really matters and making sure I’m on top of the important stuff – if I have spare time then I can revisit dressing stuff up later.
- If you choose to breastfeed you are allowed to pump and you should be able to find a comfortable location in your office to do so. There are laws – learn them.
- They are only little once. Use ALL your vacation time.
I’m sure I will have a lot more to add to this as time goes on.
I would love to hear from you – what tips and pointers do you have for moms going back to work after baby?