Being a new mom is not only a sometimes overwhelming task in and of itself but having to even contemplate returning to the routine of a daily work schedule knowing that you will have to adjust to leaving your newborn at home is enough to send you into a tailspin of emotions.
The best way to handle it is to follow some simple tips to make the transition for you, the baby, and the rest of the family as seamless as possible:
Finding the Right Babysitter
“Right” doesn’t always mean convenient. In other words, just because Susie lives a few doors down doesn’t mean she is the best fit for watching your newborn 8-10 hours a day. Ask around first to friends and relatives if they have used someone in the past that they recommend. Also, you can consult with your doctor and even co-workers that you trust to give you referrals for an individual that has the following traits and specific skill set:
• Background Check: With modern technology, it is always a good idea to pay small fee to a background checking site for criminal history checks
• Maturity: Talk to the individual and observe the way in which the conduct themselves and answer direct questions about what they would do in specific scenarios that could arise. This includes a sense of patience and nurturing on their part that you should be able to detect in their answers.
• Dependability: Did they show up late to the interview? Don’t use them unless it was a verifiable emergency that made them late.
• Positive and Good Natured: If they aren’t friendly to you, then how will they treat your child?
• First Aid Certified (incl. CPR): This is a mandatory skill and one that needs to be verified with a certificate
• Experience: No one should watch a newborn or toddler without experience with children of that age. There are certain aspects of caring for newborns that cannot be learned on the job.
Organize Your Routine
Once the baby’s routine has been prepared, then you need to create a daily roadmap to ease yourself back into your own workload and mommy duties that you will be juggling each day:
• Create a to-do list each night for the next day. In fact, create multiple lists for each part of your day and your life that lists separate tasks related work, home, and the baby. This can be a manual list, a computerized calendar, or an app on your phone.
• Meet with your boss a week or so in advance of your first day to ensure he understands that you are committed to returning to your job duties and that you both understand what those duties entail. If you are breastfeeding, including a frank discussion about the schedule you will need to accommodate this procedure. Involve your human resources dept. in this discussion, if you feel it needs to be on the record.
• Take time for you in-between work and baby duties and implement some kind of exercise regimen that includes some form of meditation and relaxation techniques. This will give you time to unwind on a regular basis, (at least three times per week), and clear your mind of work-related stress.
Remember that an initial plan always is full of good intentions but may not always work out as planned, so re-assess your lists and adapt them to suit your needs and the baby’s needs as time passes and the baby grows and your work activities change. Very soon, the routine you have set forth for yourself and the baby will become second nature.
Jessica Kane is a professional blogger who writes for Faxage a leading company that provides Internet fax service for individuals and businesses.