To The Mom Returning To Work After Baby,
Tomorrow you go back to work after bringing home your baby. Tomorrow will be a very hard day. A day that is surely going to be one of the hardest in your journey through motherhood so far.
I want you to know above all else, your feelings are valid.
You may feel excitement at seeing your co-workers again, or relief for a return to semi normalcy. You may feel like your soul hurts and you cannot put one foot in front of the other. Your emotions may change every hour. No matter how you feel, it will still be a hard day. Motherhood has completely transformed you up to this point. Whether this is your first baby or your fifth, you became a new mom again the minute that baby was laid on your chest. Returning to work after being the sole source of life for your baby these last weeks is heart wrenching. Growing and nurturing a baby around the clock for over 9 months and then having to “bounce back” into working is indescribably difficult.
I want you to know that you have a fellow working mom walking alongside you today. I have had a first day back to work three times now, and it does not get easier. At drop-off, I cried in my car each time. I tripped and fell down wearing heels for the first time in a long while. I looked at pictures on my phone all day. For the first time since my baby was born, I ate my lunch and went to the bathroom alone. You might miss your baby deeply, and you might miss yourself too. This is the start of finding your way again, with new strides.
I know you will feel the guilt. The guilt of motherhood is a silent enemy that takes hold often, and most times unnecessarily.
You might feel guilty for leaving your baby, or choosing to go to work. You might feel like you can’t keep up with working full time and being a mom full time. I promise your bond with your baby is not changing after tomorrow. I promise that all moms feel like they are constantly failing. Whatever guilt you are carrying into tomorrow, let it go. Soak in that baby’s sweet sounds and smells and throw away any guilt. The stress that greets you tomorrow can wait.
You are everything, mama. You can feel all your feelings.
Whatever feelings you have, I promise you other working moms have walked this path before you. I am one of them. Do not feel like you need to walk this path the same way as anyone else, but rather that we are there walking our own paths alongside you. Your journey is only yours, yet you never have to tackle this life alone. Don’t think about what other moms are doing and remember that you are a good mom no matter how you do it.
You are everything mama. You are the best mother for that baby. The choice you are making tomorrow as you are returning to work has no impact on your bond with your baby. You are the safe space. You are the beginning and the end.
Tomorrow you are returning to work. It will be an overwhelming day. A walk in the first of many. You are amazing. You can do hard things. You are not alone. You are everything.
All the best,