Transitioning Back to Work Full-Time
Updated: Feb 11, 2019
It's one of those decisions that every working mother faces when their one year of maternity leave is up. In Canada, we are so fortunate to be able to have the option of taking a one year maternity or parental leave of absence from our work with paid benefits. In December 2017, this parental benefit was extended to 18 months.
I never envisioned myself to be a stay-at-home mom. I can see why so many new moms don't end up returning back to work though. You want to be there and not miss any of your child's first milestones. You can't picture your baby in the care and presence of another person for 8+ hours a day. You can't trust anyone other than yourself to care for your little one. Maybe your baby will not be able to function without you being there or cry continously. That separation anxiety is so real.
But you know what; they can function and they will. The show must go on. Babies (well, toddlers now) are much smarter than you think and they also know how to get what they want. We did a two week transition before I went back to work full-time and my son was perfectly fine and happy when I wasn't around. :( It's sad to see them happy and having fun without your presence, but you have to learn to give up the fact they are becoming more independent. It's hard to accept the fact, it still is! When he knows that I am around though, he will cry and beg for his mommy to pick him up and hold him. #mommasboy
We are so fortuante to have an Ontario Early Year's Centre within walking distance from us. This gives him something to do and play (without having to worry about childproofing) and develops his social interaction skills. The first week I went with him, he kept holding on to my arm and was so timid to play with the toys or the other kids. Now I hear he's crawling around everywhere, playing with all the toys and babies and even cries when it's time to leave.
Not only is the separation anxiety real, but so is the financial situation. Most daycare centres only accept kids 18 months and older and if they accept younger, you can almost guarantee you'll be paying a premium price. Not to mention, availability in these centres are scarce. We failed to put him on a waitlist early and had no option but to hire a nanny for the duration until he turns 18 months and is accepted into a nearby daycare. The great thing with a having a nanny is the one-on-one time. My son loves his nanny, who happens to be a Universtiy student, she plays with him, takes him for walks, to the Early Year's Centre and to the park. Sometimes I get jealous of their interaction while I am at work and missing out on all his little progresses and achievements. The only negative to having a nanny is the higher price you have to pay compared to enrolling them in daycare, but it is worth it in my opnion for that one-on-one care especially since they are still young and developing.
A lot of people ask me what's it like and how I feel to be back at work and to be honest, I actually like being back. I love the fact I can sit down for a full hour and enjoy my lunch without distraction and without it getting cold. Lol. I like that I can have adult conversations without a screaming/crying baby in the background. I like having my independence back. I love the balance and I think it's healthy to have that in your life. I also love that when I get home from work, my son is always excited to see me and as soon as I pick him up, he gives me lots of hugs and kisses. <3 I know he missed me and I missed him. I love being a mom and hanging on to these moments for as long as posssible.
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