Back to work after maternity leave

On Friday night I cried. Burst into full-on tears on Jon’s shoulder. It was the end of possibly the most challenging week since Lily had been born. For 418 out of the previous 419 days, I hadn’t left Lily for more than an hour or two. Suddenly, I had to leave her for up to 11 hours a day, for 5 days straight. By day 3 she started to know I was leaving her again, for another long day, and screamed at me at 6.45am while I was putting on my work clothes, and screamed as I left the house. I felt heartbroken, like I was doing something wrong. 

She loves my mum to bits, and I’m super lucky she could come up for my first full week back at work. I also know I’m lucky to have been off with her so long, mainly due to a change of jobs at the end of my year off. This added to the stress of the week, as I wanted to do my very best every day, taking in all the new names, paperwork and information, making sure I would be doing the best for the company and my students when I started teaching again. When I got home, it was past Lily’s bedtime, so she was tired, and all I wanted was a cuddle from her. She just pushed me away and wanted to go back to my mum. I crumbled inside. 

Throw in a disrupted nights sleep, every night, and I think the exhaustion just took over. It didn’t help she’d been really poorly and clingy the week before either.

Once I’d had the outpouring of tears, I did start to see alot more sense. I think it was just pure exhaustion from the long week, along with missing Lily, everything being new, and a change to the normal routine. I know it’s for the best, and this week I’m returning to the part time hours I’d organised, so I know it should be alot easier. 

This week will have new challenges to face, with being back in the classroom teaching again, along with Lily’s first day in nursery. I know nursery will be fantastic for her, but it doesn’t stop me being nervous about her being in someone else’s hands for 8.5 hours! 

Leaving her at nursery will get easier, and she loves other children and seems to pick things up super fast (this isn’t always a good thing haha!), plus I’ve always loved teaching and helping others, so look forward to this new challenge. I hope one day she may find the enjoyment I do in helping others learn, and I know I need to be back at work, both financially and mentally. I believe it’s important to work, to earn money, and help you progress as an individual too. I’m lucky to have worked with some amazing people, who have helped me learn along the way too. The first week is out of my hands now, so let’s see what week 2 brings. 

Once we had woken up on Saturday morning, and she saw I wasn’t going anywhere, she gave me that cuddle I’d been longing for. Aside from a gym session, I spent all weekend with her, doing everything we’d normally do, with our normal breakfast routine, walks, stories and playing outdoors. 

She seemed to settle again by Sunday morning, and be her happy self again. I’m looking forward to work tomorrow, doing what I love to do, while knowing that we’ve plenty to look forward to when we do have time together this week too.

Sorry for the cheesy post, but Friday night I just crumbled. I realised being back at work isn’t just a change for me, it’s a big change for Lily too. Her whole life I’ve been by her side, so it’s important just to enjoy every minute we do spend together, and remind her that even if I do leave for work, I will always be coming home to her.

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