There’s no harder job than caring for your baby full time at home, but that doesn’t make it any easier to go back to paid work when maternity leave is up. Here are 5 tips to make the transition back to paid work as smooth as possible.
1. Be prepared for the feels
This is a big transition for your whole family, and it’s likely to be an emotional time to be away from your baby after all these months together. There’s no right or wrong way to feel, but most parents do find the first few months of saying goodbye at the childcare centre gates to be difficult. At the same time, some parents find that being back at paid work feels like a break after the demands of being a stay-at-home parent and you may feel both of these things at once. However you feel, it will get easier as you all adjust to the new routine.
2. Plan and practice the new routines
As well as taking your child to a few transition sessions at their new daycare centre, it’s worth doing a test run of the commute to the centre and your workplace before your official first day back in the office. If you have a partner to share the duties, organising beforehand who will do each drop off and pick up, and how to take turns caring for your baby while the other is getting ready in the morning will help make the new routine run more smoothly.
3. Make plans to pump
If you’re breastfeeding, discuss with your employer before you return where you can pump in safety and privacy and decide how often through the day you’ll need to take pumping breaks. When it comes to choosing a good breast pump, there are a plethora of options. Choosing a portable pump that’s lightweight and compact, like Lansinoh’s Compact Single Electric Breast Pump that has a soft, flexible Comfort-Fit™ Breast Cushion, and doesn’t need to be plugged into an electrical source, will make pumping at work easier.
4. Get ready for the week ahead on Sunday
Doing things like getting your own and your baby’s clothes ready for each weekday will mean there’s less decision making to be done in the busy workday mornings. You may also want to make a schedule for mornings and evenings that includes a cooking roster, and factors in things like what time and which parent will do baby bathing .
5. Remember you’ve got skills
When you’ve taken time out to be at home with your baby it can feel like you’re out of the loop when it comes to the demands of your workplace, but don’t forget that you’ve learnt an enormous amount in the time you’ve spent caring for your baby at home too: time management, working under pressure and the gentle art of negotiation are all skills you’ve been using through your time at home and these skills are all transferrable, so back yourself.
And remember to bring nutritious snacks to work! You’re doing many, many things, and you need taking care of too.
This sponsored post is brought to you by Lansinoh.