Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Maternity Leave Review

My maternity leave ends today and I return to work tomorrow. While I am definitely not ready to leave Vander, it is what it is and I will be heading back to work.

Maternity leave has been one of the most amazing times of my life. Obviously having a baby is a huge and exciting life change and I am so glad I was able to take twelve weeks to spend with my delightful little boy.
Naked baby this morning!

This post helped keep my maternity leave in perspective for me.  I know I was not nearly as productive as a part of me would have liked, but I knew to keep my expectations low. The main point of maternity leave is to spend time with your new baby. I didn't read much, I didn't get the basement organized, I didn't get any house projects done. But that was fine. I loved spending so much time with Vander.  Even when I considered laying him down for a nap instead of letting him sleep on me I usually decided the snuggles were worth more than getting the dishwasher unloaded.

One of my biggest concerns during my leave was getting bored, but I really don't feel like I that happened too much. My neighbor who had her baby three weeks before me really helped to give me adult interaction during my leave. Through her I was able to meet several other moms too. I also had a chance to hang out with a couple of my friends who had babies this summer. Without a doubt becoming a mom gives you a long list of things to talk about with other moms. Mom-chatting has definitely kept me from being bored.
Hanging out while I ate breakfast today

The other thing that kept me from being bored is staring at a super cute baby all day. The last two weeks especially I was all about snuggling and finding new ways to entertain Vander.

Overall I kept pretty busy. We did a couple of trips and it was absolutely fantastic to have the time available and to not have to worry about work while I was gone. I took a walk almost every day, which was a huge help with my recovery and working to get back to my pre-pregnancy body (five pounds to go out of the 45 I gained, not that I look that close to how I did before). I will definitely miss the flexibility and extra time for exercise and sunshine. 

I am so sad and worried that I am going to miss so many firsts! His first time crawling or rolling over. His first time saying new words.

I know for sure that I will miss my happy morning baby. Vander is the most adorable, smiley baby in the mornings when he first wakes up and eats and gets a diaper change. I will still get a little of this time, but it will be much shorter and less relaxed. There will definitely be less Vander photos now that I won't have as much time to take photos, but I am sure there will still be plenty for me to share.

It will be an interesting transition for the whole family. Now Dylan and I will have to balance Vander time, time together, times to ourselves in a much smaller window. We will see how it goes!

Unhappy baby this afternoon, but his pouty face is so adorable too
My main advice for maternity leave is to take the full time off that you can. I am so grateful I took the full twelve weeks off. I feel like I was able to learn so much more about Vander and his personality during the second six weeks.

Wish me luck and hopefully I don't have too many tears the next couple weeks!

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