This time last year I was on maternity leave with my daughter counting down the days in which I would return to work. I was trying to master breastfeeding, trying to adjust to this new transition and learning my newborn baby. I was also in the begining stages of postpartum depression. I returned to work only two months postpartum because had I extended the leave of absence, it would have been costly. That’s America for you. Had I extended my leave, I would have had to take Cobra coverage which entail would have been incredibly expensive for me. Maternity leave is such a crucial part of postpartum healing. Returning to work after only two months of bonding with my little one, did not feel like enough time. There are plenty of women that have the luxury of taking months to years off for child rearing reasons. I encourage, if available to you, to do so as well. I did not have the luxury of doing so. I was a year into my current job and the amount of sick time I had at that time would not allow a much longer leave of absence. If you aren’t aware of how maternity leave or FMLA works, I will try my very best to explain:
FMLA is an acronym for Family Medical Leave Act. According to the US Department of Labor, under this act, eligible employees of covered employers are able to take 12 weeks of unpaid leave for family and medical reasons.
I’m a working mom, but here’s a little secret…..sometime’s I wish I wasn’t.
When I look back at those two months spent home, I wish I had a little bit longer to stay in those moments with my little one. Nova is now 13 months and I’ve been a working mom the entire time during this pandemic. With us still being in the middle of this pandemic and having varies variants of COVID existing, makes me want to stay home even more.
I am incredibly grateful of the career that I’ve established straight out of good ole’ Rutgers University. I am also incredibily grateful that God placed so many assignments on my heart, however, I feel as if I’ve missed so many good moments with her. I wish I had the ability to be at home with her, to continue to nurture her and bond with her, without having to work 8-9 hours outside of the home. This is probably where many moms will say that I have a sense of mom guilt. You’re right. I do. Nova is at the age where when I leave the house, she says, “Mom” and starts crying. That “Mom” is already earth shattering so to hear a cry along with it, melts my heart.
On the otherhand, I love the fact that I am still pushing through my career goals and providing for my daughter. I’m an incredibly hard worker and wouldn’t change a thing about that. This work eithic probably came from being the oldest child, my parent’s and my parent’s parents. There’s so much more that I would like to accomplish which will take time and focus away from my daughter. Though I am very excited to be able to work on these new goals in 2022, I do have a little bit of mom guilt.
I am human afterall.
I am sure to hold her, play with her and cuddle with her much longer when I am with her.
BUT get right back to work.