Life as a working mom changes from week to week, but few weeks are as challenging as the first one back at work after maternity leave or an extended time at home. Thus, I’m writing a 6-week series on the first week back at work: what to expect, how to prepare, and how to get through it.
Congratulations, it’s your first day back to work!
What to expect: Though your emotions may have been all over the place up until now, when Monday morning comes you’ll actually be excited. You have a real, honest-to-goodness reason to pull yourself together today, and when you look good, you feel good. The excitement (and some nervousness) will totally pump you full of enough adrenaline that you won’t even notice you’re tired.
How to prepare: Organization is key, and the less you can do in the morning before work, the better. The night before, do as much as possible. Pack 2 bags – one with all the baby’s essentials and one with yours. Put them in the car. Make your lunch and the baby’s bottles (if possible) and put them in the fridge. Pick out clothes for both you and the baby. If you need to defrost something from the freezer for either Monday or Tuesday’s dinner, take it out of the freezer and put it in the fridge.
Though you probably won’t need one since your baby doesn’t let you sleep, set your alarm. Plan for an extra hour to get yourself and your baby out of the house in the morning. It probably won’t take this long in the future, but you don’t want to be late your first day back!
How to get through it: Plan something super easy for dinner, or enlist your spouse to cook for the evening. As soon as you get home park yourself on the couch and snuggle your baby for the rest of the night. Don’t worry about anything that needs to be done around the house. Besides, it’s hubby’s night to clean the kitchen – right?
Coming up next week: Tuesday
Previous posts: The Week Before