Remember when I wrote this lovely little ditty amidst a passionate need to make sure the world knew I’m still me?
Welp…I survived birth, but more difficult, I survived Maternity Leave. Kudos to Stay at Home Moms. “Good for you, not for me”…I cannot go 8 hours a day without intelligent adult conversation. I can’t. I know that I could probably take on Stay at Home-ness if I had to, and find play groups that would help this need, but I realized that as much as I adore my kid to bits and pieces, I need more than motherhood to keep myself sane.
There’s some lovely stuff though when you’re on maternity leave that folks asked…
“Aren’t you breastfeeding?” (upon seeing me make a formula bottle)…nope, I’m not, I did for 6 weeks, and then my kid basically screamed bloody murder despite diet changes every time I gave him my milk. He has Zantac and Colic Drops and Formula now, and I assure you his pain is everyone’s (including his own) gain, because he can sleep and get rest and enjoy life.
“How are you ever going to put him into daycare?”…drive him and drop him off. I love my kid, I want to be around him alot, but not 24/7. I want him to learn independence and social skills, the likes of which he won’t get with me being a helicopter parent. I need him to learn to be around other adults as well as kids, and quite frankly, a little “controlled” germ exposure may not hurt either – God made dirt, and dirt don’t hurt.
“Are you able to focus on work now that you’re back?” – YOU BETCHA. and guess what, when I go home I’m TONS more excited to see my kid, because the guilt of “I’m on maternity leave and I should be bonding affectionately with my child constantly instead of trying to do chores or get rest” is gone. I go home and it’s like “MOMMA TIME!! LETS DO THIS!” and for whatever reason, my brain is tons more well rested after a day of work – I can focus on fun and silliness much better.
Fact is, I’m going to make a conscious effort to stop the guilt, and it’s been paying off. I’ll be adding going back to the gym, buying myself stuff as my budget permits, and taking some couple and me time. It’s been an adjustment, but my life continues to be my own, even after that precious baby came out.
Yep, lots of stay at home parents where we’re from. Lots of them do all the right things and all the correct methods. But, guess what, so do I. Good for them, not for me. Chant it.