Goodbye Maternity Leave
After 13 wonderful months, I am fast approaching the end of my maternity leave. As Neve is my second child, this is my last maternity leave, my last baby and my last prolonged period of time ‘off’ until I retire (most likely!). It is a very surreal feeling. I am so thankful to have been able to take such a long period of time off with both my children, and feel incredibly lucky to have been able to do so.
Last week we celebrated Neve’s first birthday, marking this my reluctant time to wave goodbye to the baby years, and get my head around the fact that as of Wednesday next week I will be a part time blogger, part time HR Advisor, school run mum and nursery run mum. All at the same time. I have no idea where to begin.
What I am looking forward to:
- Regaining my sense of identity. Over the last 12 months, I have felt like ‘just’ a Mum. Not even Lucy, just ‘Mum’. It will be nice to go somewhere where my name isn’t Mum for a change, where I can have my own identity and responsibilities other than ‘just’ being a parent.
- Adult conversations. I love a bit of poo chat just as much as the next person, but I also love to chat about how GBBO will never be the same, and even to have the odd semi intelligent conversation about burning issues such as how Cadbury’s Crème Eggs are far smaller than they used to be.
- Work Clothes – after rocking the leggings and the messy mum bun for some time now, I am looking forward to actually making myself look somewhat presentable, be it in a smart work dress or even a pair of tailored trousers that aren’t covered in a snot or wotsit trail. *I hope*
- Going to the toilet on my own…. being able to visit the loo at work without seeing small fingers appear under the door or someone asking to come in with me. At least I hope my new colleagues aren’t into that sort of thing.
- Two words… hot coffee.
- Money and independence. This one may seem obvious, but after the last 3 months on zero pay, some spondoolas wouldn’t go amiss. That said, it’s amazing how you can have a relatively frugal maternity leave when you try hard enough. All things considered I haven’t done too badly.
Things I will miss:
- Watching Neighbours whilst eating my lunch (is it bad that this is top of the list??)
- Waving Daddy off in our matching pyjamas, and not needing to worry when I get no sleep and look like an extra out of the walking dead as a result.
- Pre naptime cuddles. There is NO better feeling than a snoozy post feed baby snuggling on your chest before you pop them in their cot.
- Watching every stage of Neve’s development, from the rolls to the crawls, the cruises to the steps. I hope she saves those first independent steps till the weekend!
- Seeing the friendship form between two sisters!
- Not being penalised for holidays during term time, or day trips where the queues are short and the prices friendly!
Things I am dreading…
- The multi layered commute – nursery, school and me. It’s going to be hectic. Whilst I have managed with the girls, add getting myself ready into the equation and things get a whole lot more complicated!!
- The bugs… as an emetaphobic who has already experienced our first sickness bug of the year just 3 days into the school term *sigh*, I am not looking forward to all the new germs our family will be exposed to over the next few months!
- Juggling school holidays, childcare, annual leave, and after school clubs – if anyone has found an easy way to do this with please send me your pearls of wisdom.
Overall, the end of maternity leave has bought a whole mixture of emotions from anxiety, excitement, sadness, worry, reluctance and acceptance, but I will get there. If I am a little quieter than usual. you know why!!
See you on the other side! Wish me luck!
How did you feel when your maternity leave came to an end?
*This is a collaborative post*