My Thoughts on Returning to Work Post-Baby

Wednesday, November 08, 2017

I've always considered myself a bit of a worker bee. I've been working since I was 15, not because I necessarily had to (although eventually I did) but because I wanted to. I enjoy staying busy. I pride myself on being able to "do it all" so they say.

So when I found out I was pregnant, there was no question in my mind about whether or not I would return to work after having the baby. It seemed like the natural option for me. 

I truly enjoy where I work. Currently I am a receptionist at a busy chiropractors office. I have a connection with our patients, and when they feel better after coming to us in pain, it makes me feel good. I also knew that my mom would be more than willing to watch Kenzie for me in the afternoons when I returned to work. 

I'm only there part-time, so it couldn't be that difficult, right?

Wrong. 

Returning to work has honestly been one of the hardest things I've had to do since having the baby. This idea I had in my head about spending my maternity leave at home and then skipping happily back into my office like nothing was different was totally off. When my six week marker hit during my leave I extended it to eight and when that ran out I considered extending it again to twelve, but knew I'd have to bite the bullet sometime. Financially, even the small amount of income that I bring in from my work is helpful to us, so I know that I need to work, but the more personality that Kenzie develops, the harder it is for me to leave her during the day (I know these are my attachment issues and not hers, but tell me someone else feels this way too!) 

I've considered looking for work online, something legitimate that I can do from home. But those kinds of jobs are hard to come by and so far I haven't had any luck - asking for a friend who knows about any legitimate work-from-home positions! 

I'm in awe of the women who can do it all. The ones who can work, and the ones who can stay home, and the ones who find time to do everything in between. 

Whatever choice you've made that works for you, you're doing great. I'm not sure that I'm doing whats right for me in this exact moment but I also know that it can be changed if it starts weighing too heavily on me. I've got options, this is something I've always believed in, and so do you. 

I know I'm not the first mom to have these feelings (how could I possibly be?) and I hope that by sharing them with you, you'll share with me too and we can talk together and remind each other that hard decisions will come up, but you just have to do what feels right for yourself, and for your family. 

I just want to end this post by saying that I am so grateful for the ability to work at all. I'm thankful for the opportunity to have a secure job, and I don't want to come across as someone who doesn't appreciate everything that I've got. I know that I'm lucky to be able to help contribute to my little family and the things that we have. 

I know that I'll continue to do whats right by us, regardless of what they may mean for my little family. 

Have you ever been in this position? How did you handle it? 

4 comments

  1. I still struggle with the decision to go back to work. I want to but the thought of leaving E just drives me crazy. Hugs mama!

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    1. Thanks Jen! It is totally a tough decision, I’m sure one day E will appreciate every extra minute she got to spend with you when she was this little :)

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  2. We don't have kids, we aren't planning on trying for at least another year, but this is already something that I struggle with!! Right now I would have to go back to work, but we're so close financially with my husbands salary that one promotion and paying off some debt could give me the ability to stay home. I worry that I put too much pressure on him to search out that promotion. I also worry that he'll get a promotion like I want him to and I'll end up wanting to continue to work; this happened to a co-worker of mine. I feel almost as if there is no winning, just doing what's best for your family.

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    1. I’m right there with you on having more options to stay home if my husband were able to make the next step in his career (he’s working on getting hired into a fire department and it’s a very difficult position to come by in Los Angeles!) and I’m always worried about doing the same thing by adding too much extra pressure. Truly, you won’t know what’s right for you and your family until you’re in the moment, and then if you’re anything like me you’ll kind of figure it out as you go, and it’ll all come together for you in the end. As difficult as it is to leave the baby at home, I’m still with her until mid-afternoon every day and all weekend and because I’m gone during part of the day the moments with her are so much more important for me to hold onto.

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