Returning to work: I’ve missed you…

Returning to work

Some of you might have noticed that I’ve been a bit quiet over the past two weeks.

I do hope you’ll forgive me!

I’ve been going through a period of adjustment.

Back to work adjustment.

After 14 months at home with my baby it felt like a big deal.

A big deal to leave the little girl I have been with everyday, for her whole life; a big deal getting my head around leaving her in the hands of others; and a big deal psyching myself back up ready to conquer the world of work again!

I have always been a planner. It’s not like me to not have a plan. But when Elsie came along I soon realised that not everything will go to plan; nor will everything be able to have a plan.

Frankly, I just needed to go with it and ride the wave of parenthood.

One day at a time.

So I decided to concentrate on being a Mum, forget about work, and deal with a work plan when the time came.

I didn’t know whether I’d go back to my consulting business or whether I would start something completely new. I had no plan. It felt pretty odd.

I had no maternity leave countdown to get used to the thought of going back to work, it just happened that something came along and my gut feeling was to jump at it.

I had actually considered transitioning my career to do more blogging and freelance writing from home, for the ultimate flexible job.

I know some really successful bloggers and writers who love what they do. Blogging opened up a whole new world for me, full of really talented and interesting people.

I even made some friends!

(Well I like to think so)

There is a world of opportunity out there for a hard working blogger. I thought, if I set my mind to it, I could do that too… I’d enjoy it.

But then I had a moment of clarity. I was reading an article on LinkedIn (in my field of change, communications and engagement) and it reminded me how passionate I was about my work; about people; and about helping businesses improve how they engage with people.

I remembered how much I actually cared about my career; what I used to do; I was good at it.

I was reminded, I have a ‘particular set of skills’.

[Can you name the film that matches the quote?]

So I made the decision.

I found a new contract. Then suddenly had a small panic.

I have a baby!

I was delighted this job came with a shorter commute than I’ve had in years, but still, we all had to be up, dressed, breakfast eaten, packed lunch made and out the house by 7.45am.

That stressed me out more than starting a new job!

I remember the days when leaving the house in that sort of routine would have been almost impossible.

Parents- remember how long it took us to physically get out the house with a new baby and all the paraphernalia involved? Sometimes to the point of thinking, ‘Bollocks to that, we’ll just stay at home today!

I had to get super organised with the shopping. Have meals planned, wine in the fridge (obvs!) and basically do all I could to prepare us at home, in advance.

I certainly wouldn’t be able to just say to the husband shall we go out for dinner tonight, it’s been a hard day at work.

We have a baby now. We don’t go out!

I was amazed when we achieved our new routine on the first day, then the next… and was pretty chuffed with the parenting team-work of our household. ( I literally couldn’t do this without my husband. Thank you Andrew)

I’ve had to emotionally adapt to the change too.

I had no idea that leaving for my first day back at work post-baby would make me feel like my heart was being ripped out. I shed a few tears on my way out the house, and then took a lot of deep breaths.

My friend, Pats, said to me: “Try not to cry in the office. Do all the crying quietly in the car, or the loo and we’ll call that a successful day one”.

Thanks Pats. It made me laugh.

I got to work, got in the zone, and thoroughly enjoyed being at work.

Importantly, it gave me a break from feeding time at the Zoo: food being thrown everywhere by a little monkey. Feeding time at the Zoo has the potential to be the ticking time bomb that will one day lead to my insanity.

Being with your baby 24/7 is relentless. It is hard work. There is never a break. It is probably the most challenging job I’ve ever had in terms of testing my patience and resolve.

Going back to work gave me a sense of freedom I’d previously never considered.

I missed my baby, yes.   I couldn’t wait to see her when I got home to give her a big cuddle. But I also got a little bit of me back for a few days. And it was worth it.

I’ve spent these past two weeks getting into the new routine, getting into my new job and adapting to the new world. I’ve been dealing with the new emotions, the busyness and the change.

We all have.

My next adaptation is finding some time amongst it all to keep writing my blog.

I may not be able to write as often as I used to, but I’d love to carry on our conversations.

I’ve missed you too!

If you haven’t already, please join Bottlefor2 on facebook and twitter. I’m just trying to figure out google + so join me there too, if you wish. You can also subscribe to my blog via the menu (near the top). or
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  • That’s so lovely to hear that the transition back to work is going well. I’ll be joining you soon (not literally at the same place of work , don’t want to freak you out, but going back to work in a couple of weeks). It’s nice to go back but you only realise that once you are back – before that assume a state of high anxiety (which I am currently in) x

    • I was in that too. I nearly wrote about it a couple of weeks ago, but it was so emotional I decided to take a step back – From everything but surviving the return to work! I know how you feel. I had tears while pushing her on the swing “for the last time”. It wasn’t. It just felt like it. I have a good balance now. Thankfully working 3 days, so I still have 4 days of feeding at the zoo to keep me enjoying work! Hope it goes well for you. Look forward to reading about it. I love your blog x

  • I remember this stage with both my girls. It’s a big lurch when you first go back. I wish my job was a bit less all or nothing but sadly I have to work long hours and that’s just the way it is- it’s not forever. I’m glad you’re enjoying being back- it’s good to read a post from a working mum who really enjoys her career! #twinklytuesday

    • Thanks Morna, it is hard to leave them but there are definite benefits to working too. I’m sure I’ll have my moments but I’m still enjoying the novelty and freedom away from the zoo!

  • Glad it’s going well! Once I’d settled back into the working routine, I liked it. Having a break from zoo central was good for my sanity. #twinklytuesday

    • You forget how important time at work for your sanity can be, don’t you! Getting some time out by any method is a must and so many of us never give ourselves the opportunity for a break.

  • Well done Lucy, the hardest part is done now and you survived hooray 🙂 Juggling motherhood and managing a home with work and blogging isn’t easy but there are many rewards if you can do it. Sometimes I go quiet on the blog front for a bit because I’m busy at work or at home and that’s just the way it is and I’ve realised that it’s ok. It’s not easy fitting everything in and blogging is the thing that has to go first. I’d taken Seb out yesterday to a fab Bushcraft morning which we both loved. So in the afternoon I thought it would be fine if I got on with a bit of blogging (as we’d had a ‘quality time’ morning) however he came in complaining that I was pending too much time blogging! You can’t win sometimes 😉 Lots of love and hope you continue to enjoy work. xx

    • Ah thanks Tor. I’ve missed you! Your wise words are very much appreciated. It is easy to put too much pressure on ourselves blog wise. It is a passion and a community. Time away from it sometimes makes you feel you’ve lost touch, but you are right, sometimes you have to prioritise. And you find that your friends are still there after all. X

  • Glad to hear all is going well with the return to work! Friends of mine who have gone back have said they enjoy being them self again and the freedom it gives from childcare. There are always positives and negatives whichever choice you make and glad to hear you have made the right decision for you ? xx #twinklytuesday

    • Thanks Caroline. Yes there are positives and negatives, that’s for sure. Getting a break from full time child care is good for my sanity. However my job is never easy, so that can drive you mad in a different way! Variety is important though I think!

  • It sounds like your relationship to work is a lot like mine, although my twins were 11 WEEKS old when I went back. I really think I’m a better mum for having that time and fulfillment away from the children.

    Thanks for linking with #TwinklyTuesday.

  • Returning to work after Maternity Leave is quite a daunting task so well done for taking the plunge! It’s great that you’re enjoying your time back and you intend to keep your blog going as well, I look forward to reading more about your fun as a family. #TwinklyTuesday

  • Such a nice honest read.

    I haev been off the blog too. Seeing things and how am I doing. I have been thinking a lot too if I will go on or just give up =(


    • It takes a lot of time to keep a blog going doesn’t it. I know I’d have more free time and me time if I stopped but I think I’d miss it too… It is a tough decision
      Hope you work out what’s best for you Merlinda x

  • Going through a similar thought process myself at the moment! I’m mainly excited and just a little bit sad x

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