I was hoping that I wouldn’t have to write a blog post like this until at least after Christmas but unfortunatley I’ve had to cut my Maternity Leave shorter than I had originally planned. The whole way through my pregnancy I was determined to have a full year off with Arlo and be at home for the older boys but as life would have it, I’ve had to only have 8 months off instead.
I went back to work really early on after having Mason and missed out on so many things including a lot of his firsts, so I definitely learnt from that mistake and was determined to spend as much time with Arlo as possible. I never put my family first but this time around my family comes first before anything else. Whilst being on maternity leave I realised that we, as mothers don’t really get a great deal of money each month, once all the bills were paid I was left with hardly anything, which then had to go towards buying things for the boys when they needed it. The amount of times I’ve had to borrow money just to keep myself afloat until my next wage is unreal. In fact it’s down right shit and unless, you have a partner that is the bread winner of the family and earning mega money, how you’re supposed to support your family on such a poxy pay is beyond me.
I started back in October doing KIT days and was really anxious about leaving Arlo and doing full shifts in work, with him being exclusively breastfed I was worrying he would end up with seperation anxiety or he wouldn’t take the bottle or even eat while I was away. I’ll be honest he has taken really well to it but does still miss me and then, when I’m home he does cling to me but I expected that. As long as he’s happy while I’m in work that’s all I care about.
I was worrying over nothing, but have come to realise that it’s me that gets anxious when I leave him, I do miss him a lot and don’t get me wrong as much as I love my job, I just don’t feel ready to be back in work. Every shift fills me with dread and I can’t sleep the night before a shift. Everything has changed in work and I’m getting to know everyone, who have already made friends and have been working together for months. I feel like being the oldest with kids that I really have nothing in common with anyone anymore. I’ve never felt like this and it’s quite a suffocating feeling to have, it’s like I almost go into panic mode.
I have to try and motivate myself and drag myself into work, and dread each and every shift and what it will bring. I love my regular customers and it’s been great catching up with the ones that I have seen but inside I’m dying to still be at home with my baby, thinking about what I will have missed him doing. I’ve been feeling so confused by it all because work is supposed to be that one place you can go to have some time away from the kids. I’m so confused and conflicted as to what is wrong but I think it’s down to the fact I’m just not ready to be back at work.
I’ve never suffered with my mental health or anything like this before. I had a little bout of Post Natal Depression with Mason for the first few months but that’s about it. I like to think I take care of my mental health but maybe it’s because I’m getting older or something else entirely but this is most definitely a new feeling for me. Should I go to talk to someone about these feelings??
When do you go to see your GP about this?? Have you returned to work after being on Maternity Leave??