Yesterday I had a KIT day- a ‘Keeping In Touch’ day. Personally I think companies should use it to keep in touch midway through maternity leave rather than at the end (it might help mums feel less isolated and encourage more mums to come back!) but that’s another story. I have been determined to give Lo-Lo and myself the best chance possible of a smooth, non-heart-wrenching transition back to work. And I really do believe it should be a transition rather than going cold turkey. This is no plaster that needs ripping off. This is a tough, emotional time- for the two of you.
So why is it SO difficult to leave your baby when you go back to work?
– That little person is all you/yours. They were created inside you and used your body, your nutrients, your blood to develop. They are literally a part of you albeit no longer physically attached.
– You’ve spent almost everyday of their life with them. You have had them with you everyday for 9 months and then the same again probably outside the womb. Because of this you will know them the best.
– You love everything about them. Their every fart, sneeze, chubby roll, toe, eyelash, sloppy kiss/bite, wobbly walk, gummy grin and each new habit they pick up. They’re TOO CUTE!
– You are their world. They’ve learned so much from you and they trust you implicitly, just look at those big eyes… so you better be leaving them for a bloody good reason!
YOU ARE THEIR WORLD and they are yours. You go from being an individual, to a mum. You go from thinking about how to fill your time to having your every second filled with caring and loving someone else and then suddenly you go back to work. You’re the same, but very different.
So yes employers, going back to work is a MASSIVE change in our lives and most find it a complete struggle to start back. It should be noted that the above reasons are really just the emotional ones, you then have the change in lifestyle, expectations, pressures, guilt and complete change in daily routine to try to figure out.
Hence I’ve been having my KIT days. I have also been leaving Lo-Lo with our child minder increasingly over the last weeks. I need to get used to being away from her as much as she needs to get used to it. I figure it is all much easier to deal with if you can drop off a happy baby who’s used to their childminder and enjoys their day. Or you could leave everything to the last minute, but I figure that’s more likely to result in dropping off a crying baby- helpful when you already have the searing guilt that you are abandoning your child.