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I’m back to work in just 3 weeks. Maternity leave second time around has gone extremely fast. But then I’ve had a toddler and a baby to care for. Plus I lost my dad right at the start. Do I feel ready to go back to work? I do and I don’t. I do to have some adult company and to have some time for me. I don’t in that I can’t bare to leave my girls.
Maternity leave first time was amazing, once we got into a routine. We went to our baby sensory classes, went for walks and to the shops. I had time to stop and take it all in. Second time, well it’s different!
While I’ve Been Off
While I’ve been off, we have got two chickens (inherited from my dad), I’ve built my blog into a steady income stream for us. Meaning I don’t have to go back full-time. It’s been the best Summer for a long time. We’ve spent lots of time at the beach, at the park and at home in the garden. With the paddling pool and bubbles. The hours I’m going back to work means I will still have all the afternoons, which I’m pleased about.
We have picked strawberries, all went swimming together for the first time. Went on our first family holiday as a four. Made pirate ships, played football, went butterfly catching. Danced in muddy puddles, had numerous tea parties and walked for miles in the woods. I’m sure there are lots of other things we did but these are just a few.
I do feel sad that this will be the last time I will be off work for a substantial amount of time. I’ve weighed up the pros and cons of having a third child and that will not be happening!
Why is Maternity Leave Different Second Time Around?
- Routines are out the window – Trying to get into a routine with a baby and a toddler is nay on impossible. There is always a toddler group to go to when it’s the baby’s nap time. The toddler will try to wake the baby up CONSTANTLY.
- No more catching up on box sets during the day – You will have to have Peppa Pig or Hey Duggee on repeat to keep the toddler occupied and stop them from poking the baby’s eye’s out.
- No more lazy mornings – Awake at the crack of dawn to a little voice wanting Coco Pops and Milkshake on.
- Don’t care where you breastfeed – First time around I would go out to the car, or plan where I go and where to breastfeed. Second time around with a toddler with me acting up and a lack of sleep, I just don’t care.
- Not all about the baby – The baby fits in around you. Good job this time we are doing Babyled weaning, so they eat the same, The baby copies the toddler and wants an Ice lolly every time the toddler has one. The toddler feeds the baby cake. The baby has to learn to share mummy.
- They entertain one another – I don’t have to constantly wave a rattle in front of the baby, the toddler does it. They laugh and kind of play together. Well, If you class the baby pulling the toddler’s hair and not letting go, so the toddler is screaming like a banshee. Then the older child finds it funny to push the baby backwards with one finger on her forehead!
- You don’t feel guilty if no housework is done – The newborn stage goes really fast, much faster second time around so enjoy every precious moment. Who cares about the housework? It will be there later!
I suppose maternity leave second time around, is more about surviving. In the early days when my husband went back to work, I would count down the hours until he came home. It was more difficult for me as I couldn’t drive for 6 weeks as I had a c-section. Plus my mum who doesn’t drive lives 25 minutes away by car. Gradually though I found my routine with the girls.
I’ve realised how much I’ve seen my toddler grow and develop since I’ve been at home with her. Which I’m pretty sure I would have missed if I was at work full-time instead of being on maternity leave. I really thought I would have got her potty trained as well before I went back to work, but her brain and bladder don’t seem to be quite connected yet. She knows if she’s done a wee or a pooh after she’s done it, just doesn’t know when she needs to do it. I’m pretty sure it will come soon to her.
This has been such a special time for all of us, spending quality time together as a family of four. I’ve loved every minute. Maternity leave second time around has been a blast! I wonder how everything will fit together in 2019 with both of us working parents, with two kids under 3 years old.
Getting into Routines In 2019
2019 sees us getting into lots of routines. Firstly my back to work routine. I’m dropping from full-time down to 22 hours a week. Working 3 mornings and a full day on Saturday with a 5:30 am start! Baby girl is staying at home with my MIL looking after her while I’m at work. But this is only until April when she’s going to preschool for the 3 mornings I work. Mr B will have both girls all day Saturday’s. Baby dottie is going to my mums, which is only 5 minutes from my work for the 3 mornings. Mum is looking forward to it, to help her keep busy, while getting over the loss of my dad. It’s going to be a busy start getting us all used to the times, but we will get there I’m sure.
I will keep you updated on how we get on with my return to work second time around. It’s gonna be a challenge!
How did you find maternity leave second time around? Was it what you thought it would be?
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