Five Things Maternity Leave Taught Me

Yesterday was the last day of my maternity leave, and I cannot help but reflect on the last six weeks. Spending time with my newborn baby, and his older sister was nothing short of amazing. Having had my daughter in daycare since she was six weeks old (she is currently seventeen months old) I missed out on her growing up. While spending time with our newest addition I got to catch up with her as well. I also got to learn things about her, our new baby, and myself.
1.       They really do grow up too fast
I cannot believe my son is already six weeks old today. I swear I just gave birth a few days ago. Six weeks ago? Really??? My itsy bitsy baby now weighs twelve pounds?
2.       Nursing is very relaxing
You would think I would have learned this with my daughter, but back then I was a newbie and I was too concerned with doing everything “right” to stop and just simply enjoy having my baby next to me, doing all sorts of cute things while feeding.
3.       It is okay if your kid starts crying
I used to be terrified of running errands with my daughter when she was a newborn in case she started crying in public and then everyone would think I am a bad mother. Now, I am not saying it is okay to allow your kids to have a complete melt down while you are at the grocery store, but a little sniffling, whining and general complaining in public can be okay. Your children are not little angels regardless of what you keep telling yourself. Mine are not little angels either. If I plan on ever getting anything done, I need to come to terms with this fact.
4.       I am still me
Just because I have a baby and a seventeen months old does not mean I am now relegated to be chained to my children with no time for myself in sight. Of course time to myself is now far shorter and more sporadic, but it exists, and I savor it when I get it. Spending twenty four hours a day with my children for the past six weeks helped me realize that the couple of hours I got to myself on Saturdays was indeed a time to indulge but spend wisely. I would think of all the things I wanted to do, and then come up with the one thing I REALLY wanted to do. It was almost like finding myself all over again.
5.       Getting dressed up is optional
I cannot count the times my daughter and I had pajama days in the past few weeks. Before having children I could not fathom even getting the mail without first donning a cute outfit. Then after having my daughter I relaxed a bit, but still required quite some maintenance to even make it to the grocery store. Then the second came around. A splash of make-up and clean clothes is all I require now. Flip flops will suffice.
What are some of your maternity stories?
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