Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Dealing With The End of Maternity Leave

You have a perfect little angel. When you look down at your little one, you cannot imagine leaving him at home every week after those six weeks are up. Dealing with the end of maternity leave is one of the most emotional issues you will face during this stressful time in your life. There are ways that you can help yourself to deal with this time. Here are a few tips.

First, you should be sure that you prepare for good daycare before your baby gets here. While you will be busy before the little one gets here, this task should be a top priority. You will not feel like looking for a childcare provider right after you have had the baby. Finding someone you can trust will help ease your transition.

Prepare yourself by taking a little time without the baby. One of the problems with leaving the baby is that this person suddenly has become the most important part of you life. You may be so accustomed to having the baby in your life that you feel odd, or even guilty, when you are spending time on anything else. A couple of weeks before you go back to work, begin to prepare yourself. Go out for a walk or a cup of coffee. Try going to a movie on your own without the baby. Work your way into spending time without your baby in your life.

Don't be afraid to voice your concerns. Some moms feel that if they show anyone how they feel, they will be seen as weak. If you never discuss your concerns or sadness, then it will only hurt you in the long run to keep them bottled up. Instead, you should tell your mom, your partner, your best friend that you have some concerns about going to back to work.

Discuss nighttime options with your partner first. You and the baby should have a schedule down before you go back to work. You need to make sure that you will be able to get a reasonable amount of sleep at night. If your baby does not sleep well at night, plan to get sleep during the evening. Work your schedule around the little one's body clock, at least for now. It will make everything easier for everyone.

If you have not been prepared in the past for your morning the night before, do it now. Get out your clothes, your lunch, your breakfast if you can. Make it easier on yourself, and the process will be smoother for all involved.

The bottom line is that if you cannot deal with leaving your baby in the care of strangers, regardless, you may want to think about working from home or staying at home with your baby. Having a new baby changes your perspective in many ways, and while you may have thought you never would have stayed home, that may become something you really want to do. Check with your employers first to see if you have telecommuting or flexible scheduling options. If not, you may want to think of going into business for yourself or looking for a work at home job.

by Julia Mercer

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