I know everyone says it, but really…How fast does maternity leave go!!? The 9 months of pregnancy seems to drag on as if you’ve been pregnant for years! Yet the 9 months of your new life with baby here whizzes by in what feels like minutes!
I can’t quite believe on the 11th October my baby is 9 months old and suddenly not so baby anymore! I feel so extremely lucky and privileged to have been able to spend every waking minute (and there are a lot of awake times and very little sleep times!!) with Spencer during his first 9 months of life.
Although I have LOVED my new life it also seems to be one big blur! Looking back on photos now I am suddenly reminded of all the times we’ve had that I have since forgotten about! Some memories at the time I thought would scar me for life and I would never forget! It’s funny how those memories disappear from your mind and all you are left with is the fun, laughs and special bonding moments you’ve had. The ‘oh my god is this really my life’ ‘I don’t want to be full time Mum anymore, get me back to work!!’ moments just vanish!
It seems almost unfair and cruel that just as you get to the ‘easier’ stage it’s time to go back to work. You’ve done the hard part of sleepless nights, reflux, constant feeds, vaccinations, transferring baby to his own room, starting the weaning process just generally not really knowing what you are doing and basically winging it! To actually ‘yea Iv got this’ you know what baby wants most of the time now, he’s eating well, he’s entertaining himself, he’s sleeping through the night (who would have ever thought!!).. so now is the time to actually really start enjoying it. Get baby to some clubs now he’s more alert, get those house bits done you thought you would have done months ago while baby plays happily watching you… just enjoying some quality time with baby now you’ve both ‘found your place’.
But no… suddenly you’ve got the hard part done you’re just starting to really enjoy time with baby feeling a million times more relaxed and BAM maternity leave it over.
This, in my eyes is the hardest decision any parent faces. Most of us have no choice but have to keep earning some kind of money now maternity pay is finished. Firstly it’s the whole ‘is there any point going back full time to just spend anything I earn on childcare’ then this opens your eyes to the fact that actually you are just going to work to pay for someone else to spend all day with your child and that grates on you! Then you start questioning yes I would like some adult company again and getting back to doing something other than changing nappies and making funny faces/voices at your baby to entertain them. But then actually I quite like my days being silly with little one and would I just miss him everyday I’m not with him. Iv worked so hard to get to where we are now.. I don’t want to risk missing anything! His first steps, his first word (I am still pretending Dada is just a syllable he has learnt and Muma will actually be the first word 😉) there is so much to miss!
The conclusion… I still don’t know where I am and where I am going!! I am trying so hard to just enjoy where I am now but in the back of my mind I know I need to start earning some £££ very soon!! Fortunately, I am very lucky to hopefully be able to go part time getting a healthy balance of the two! However, this horrid decision you are faced with at the end of your maternity leave in my eyes is one of the hardest parts of parenting yet!! Talk about a smack back to reality!!!