Leaving isn’t easy.
As my maternity and time with my little one draws to a close I am finding it harder and harder to be happy. Friends and family tell me to “enjoy the time I have left” and to not think about the fact that in two short sweet weeks I have to go back to work. I have to go back to mornings without cuddles (one of our favorite morning activities, see picture from this mornings session). Days without changing a dirty diaper and getting peed on. Afternoons without petting his silky baby hair. A whole day without my baby.
Luckily I got to take eight weeks off with him but that still doesn’t seem like enough. I mean, I carried my child for 36 weeks and now I am supposed to only see him for a few hours at night? It is like a part of me is going to be left behind. Maternity leave in America sucks ass.
Some could argue that I decided to have a child and I should have thought about that prior to having him. That I should have waited until our finances were in order before having him. You know there are those assholes out there that will say that. Most of those people don’t have children, but that is besides the point. In response, I didn’t know I would feel that way. I had no idea what this love was like. Unless you have had a child, you have no idea what this feels like and I do not think you can fully prepare yourself for leaving them. Even if I did know, why should I wait years and years?
I have spent hours trying to figure out what bills I could cut, what we could live without in order for me to stay home. My husband even said he would get another job ( which is ridiculous, but you can tell he loves me). Ways I can earn some extra money in order to get some more cuddles in. The fact is that I can’t cut back any of the bills, apparently we need heat and shelter. I can’t make enough to offset what we would lose. We cannot live on one income. I have to go back to work.
I know millions of mothers do it every year and I will be fine. There are a few things that make me feel a little better about going back. I know he will be in good hands and he will be loved all day & in reality, he doesn’t care if I am there or not. He is a baby. The only person that this will bother is me. The thing that is helping the most is what my mother said,
“By you going back to work, you are
giving him a better life. You are making
sure he will have everything he needs.
You are being a good strong roll model.
You are being a good mother.”
So for the next two weeks I will be enjoying the last days of morning cuddles, being spit up and peed on all day and the sweet baby smell. Because I have to go back to cubicles & slacks.
How long did you take off work? Do you feel like you got enough time?