I thought a whole year off work would seem like a really long time when I walked out of the office at the end of June last year. In reality it has flown by. To begin with it felt like a holiday, the UK was experiencing a heatwave with temperatures reaching 36 degrees, and I spent the last few weeks of pregnancy sun-bathing in the garden, reading books, and cooking. I got nearly 6 weeks by myself as little one was over two weeks late.
When I look back at the past 10 months, the time has gone so fast, but when you’re in the trenches of the 4 month sleep regression and hour long feeds the days can seem so long.
I have 2 months left of my maternity leave before I return to work full-time (4 days in the office, and 1 day working from home) and now it is starting to dawn on me that I really should make the most of these last two months. I have loved being able to have a year off work to spend with my daughter, it has had its highs and lows and I thought I would capture what I will and won’t miss about maternity leave.
What I will miss:
- My daughter! I will miss her every minute of everyday when she’s in nursery. I’m already dreading the moment I have to hand her over for her first day in nursery on the 28th June.
- Seeing all the new things my daughter does everyday, she is currently going through rapid change at the moment, every day she does something new and I’m worried that I will miss these little things.
- Long walks around the local park, doing 2 or 3 laps just to get her to sleep. I worked out that I have probably done about 700 laps since the start of maternity leave, and over 1000 miles of pushing the Bugaboo.
- Endless coffee and cakes with the NCT ladies throughout the week, sometimes we meet up as much as 3 times a week. It will be a shock not seeing these ladies as often, and only being able to meet up at the weekends.
- Pub lunches in the week, who would say no to a glass of wine or pint.
- All the baby classes we go to – Baby Sensory and Baby Bounce. I feel that these have been fundamental in my daughters development, and they have created a routine for our week. I would recommended Baby Sensory to any new mum with a new born baby, we have been going since our little one was 5 week’s old.
- Feeling like I can just about manage everything from looking after our daughter, keeping on top of the housework and washing, and cooking meals for us all (and blogging too).
- My daughter…..did I already say that.
What I won’t miss:
- Struggling to get my daughter down for her lunchtime and afternoon nap, sometimes this can take up to an hour to do. I hope the staff at her nursery will have some magic ways to get her to sleep.
- Nappy changing, these are getting more and more interesting as her appetite grows.
- Finding a half drunk cup of tea in a random place in our house, or forgetting that I had drunk my tea.
- Doing everything at home from then washing, cooking, cleaning etc….Tasks will have to be shared, and a cleaner employed.
- Feeling like I keep playing with the same toys over and over again with my daughter, or reading the same books. Once she is at nursery she will have a raft of toys to play with/books to read.
- Constantly thinking about what I going to cook for my daughter, and making sure that she has enough variety in her diet. Although I will still need to think about to think her food, it won’t be everyday.
How did you spend the last few weeks/months of your maternity leave, is there anything that I should definitely be doing to make the most of the time we have left before I go back to work, and she goes to nursery?
Thank you so much for reading.