I was carrying her inside me for nine months. We were inseparable, we ate together, slept together, went for walks and to the work. I was looking forward to see her for the first time and hold her in my arms. I was imagining the eyes and hair she would have and I was thinking of names. Then the big day came, when her crying sounded in my ears, like the most beautiful music I had ever heard. I was holding her, I was looking at her, I had tears of joy in my eyes, I was in a state of euphoria. It was winter and it was cold, but my heart was full of warmth and glee. The last thing I thought about back then, was the early return to work.
When I got home from the maternity hospital, the last thing on my mind was going back to work. I enjoyed every single day, hour and minute with my little girl. I was adjusting, learning, discovering, how to be a mom. She was sleeping next to me in her cradle, I was listening to her breathing and that was calming me down. We had spent lots of nights being awake and the sleepiness the next day, was unbearable. I was singing to her Celine Dion’s song “A new day has come” when she couldn’t calm down and she was falling asleep, right away. I was entering the room walking on my tip toes, every 15 minutes, to make sure she was fine. So many unforgettable moments, so many unique memories.
Two months had passed. Without realizing it, the day of separation had come. The day I had to go back to work. I had mixed emotions back then. On the one hand, I felt anxious and guilty that I was leaving her so little, on the other hand, I needed to get out of the house, meet people and socialize.
Some situations had made me reconsider my early return to work back then
- While at work, I was constantly concerned about her. I was calling home every hour to find out if she was ok.
- When she was getting ill, I was really upset about not being there to take care of her.
- I was missing important moments, like when she took her first steps.
- I was thinking that my absence could cause her emotional uncertainty while she was searching for my presence.
- In the first three years, too many people were looking after her. It’s extremely important to make sure that there is stability in child’s life, from the beginning. No more than two people with different points of view, should be involved in the parenting. Especially, the presence of the mother in the first years of child’s life is very important.
On the other hand, there were the pros
- Due to the nature of my work I was interacting with a lot of people. It had helped me to get back to my normal daily routine. Returning to my work, the change from my everyday life, before I became a mom, to the after life, occurred more smoothly. As my job had always been part of my daily routine and continued to be, even after the big change. When everything had changed, after the arrival of my baby girl, my job remained static. That made me feel less out of place.
- I had read that according to a study, working mothers value their children’s company more, so they interact more intensely with them. In contrast, mothers, who spend all day with their children may appreciate more some quiet hours, avoiding offering strong stimuli to their children. I can say that I experienced that as well, at some point.
However, if I had the flexibility, I would’ve stayed with my little girl longer, for many reasons. Mainly, because children are more important than anything else in this life. They need to be treated with respect, love and devotion. In addition, being a parent is an equally important and great job.
What was your experience with early return to work after birth?