Even the strongest of women have to take a break from work when they are pregnant. No matter how much you love your job, you will need to let your body take its course and prepare to give you a little you. After birth, you will also need to recover and take time to bond with your child before getting back to work. Some women get a hard time adjusting back to work after pregnancy and birth, and others do it effortlessly. If you feel like you are struggling, here’s a guide to help you out:
GET A TRUSTWORTHY BABY SITTER
You can only get enough peace of mind to work by knowing that your baby is in trustworthy and capable hands. Not many jobs will allow you to bring your baby to work because you won’t achieve much there. Unless you are working from home, you will need to hire a babysitter to help with the baby.
The best way to get a babysitter would probably be by getting recommendations from friends or family with experience. They will probably know one or two sitters who they have worked with before and trust them well enough to recommend them. If not, you could find one from a trusted agency. Be sure to make your requirements and rules very clear from the beginning. Watch how they handle baby stuff like pram accessories and liners. You should also have a good look at their work histories and references to check for credibility and reputation.
If you get a trustworthy sitter, you can go back to work knowing that everything will be okay at home.
GET IN TOUCH WHEN YOU CAN – BUT NOT ALL THE TIME
You will certainly be thinking about your baby most of the day, wondering if he’s somewhere screaming his lungs out for you, or trying to figure out if he has been fed. That’s okay; this is very much normal and expected. If you are not careful, however, it could quickly get in the way of you doing your job.
If you can trust your baby’s caretaker, there is no need to keep torturing yourself. To put yourself at ease, call home when you are feeling worried and see how things are going. Make sure you get the baby everything they may need such as play tents and playmats online. Don’t be at the phone every ten minutes – you will probably raise some eyebrows and get your boss wondering whether you are really ready to be back at work.
DON’T TRY TOO HARD – DON’T HIDE THAT YOU ARE A MUM
One of the hardest parts of going back to work is adjusting to the fact that you are now a mom, and that everyone will probably see you in a new light. Some women try to hide that and make their motherhood some kind of big secret or forbidden thing that no one should even know or talk about.
That will probably not work – by the time you go back to work, everyone will probably know that you were away on parental leave.
Some mums go to great lengths to hide the fact that they had babies. Some push themselves too hard so they can try and match the pace of their coworkers. Others won’t even tell their coworkers the name of their baby when asked; some just want to work and do things like the pregnancy never happened. This is not good for your mental health. You’ll need everyone around you to know what you have, and you are going through so they can give you space or time you need to re-adjust.
LET YOURSELF HEAL
Some mothers will feel very guilty about being away for their maternity leave. Such women often push themselves too hard to try and recover for the time they consider lost. Others jump out of bed as soon as they can walk and walk right back to their offices and start working.
You should understand that you have been making a little human for nine months and you have just brought them to the world. Your body changed and will need time to heal and go back to its state before pregnancy. Take time to adjust to being a mom, and use that time to bond with your baby. Take time to develop strong mental health and to rest. When you are ready, you can take on the world one step at a time.
Getting back to work too soon can not only disconnect you from your baby but may expose you to stress factors which in turn may put you at more risk of developing post-maternity depression. You won’t have enough time to balance your personal life and your work life, and you may soon be overwhelmed with things to do.
BE READY FOR YOUR COLLEAGUES
Your coworkers will probably want to know where you have been and what you have been up to. If they know you were pregnant, they will probably press for details such as your baby’s gender and name.
If you shut them out, you’ll be sending a rather cold message, but you may not always be ready to share such kind of information with your coworkers. If that’s the case, let them know respectfully that you don’t feel comfortable talking about your baby and personal life with them.
If it gets out of hand, you can approach your boss and ask for help. If you are friends with them, let them in and even invite them over on a weekend to hold the baby. It all depends on your relationship with them.
In conclusion, getting back to work after pregnancy is not easy, but it is a manageable process that won’t stress you out if you take your time. Be upfront with your boss so they know when to expect you, and be ready for your coworkers. Don’t worry too much about your baby if they are in capable hands, and don’t rush to work too soon. Things will fall in place real soon and you’ll be a strong working mother in no time.