Well today marked my official re-entry into the work world. I've dreaded this day for weeks, especially since I realized the disappointing reality that my maternity leave would have to be cut shorter than I'd hoped for based on some financial circumstances. I'd planned to take all 12 weeks with my little pumpkin, and I'd arranged everything perfectly, so I thought. I'd use my 4 weeks vacation for the first few weeks, and I'd be getting an Aflac short term disability check that would cover us for the rest. In fact, the plan was so perfect I've been paying into that Aflac policy for maybe 2 years, just in case. Only to find out that Aflac considers a vaginal delivery with no complications worthy of 6 weeks, and 6 weeks only, period. (Wish I'd known that when they started debiting my paycheck!) And then, after filing for continuing disability due to post partum depression (did I not tell you about how my 6 week check up went? Well, that doctor's appointment was, um, interesting!), I came to find out that PPD isn't covered either. So. That's that! Stuck with my measley 4 weeks vacation pay and my 6 weeks of Aflac. Which by the way isn't nearly the same as 6 weeks working. So, I drug myself back to work part time for 2 weeks until I have to start back full time after Christmas. (Sigh. I am NOT ready to go there yet!)
But, I really think having to accept going back to work earlier than expected along with the dread leading up to it has been the worst part. My sweeeeet little girl slept a good 7:30 hours last night, so that meant her mama got to sleep a good 7 hours too! And after her daddy got her up this morning and changed her and got her ready, we had a lovely time at breakfast and playing! I love her baby time in the mornings probably more than anything--after she eats she'll end up snuggling on my chest for a while after I burp her, perfectly sweet and content, and then I'll let her sit on my lap and prop her up on my knees and we're able to just look at each other and play--I talk and sing nonsense and she always tries to join in with her little sounds and coos, she'll hold my fingers with her whole hands, and we'll end up just smiling at each other. It seems like a rare and special time when I've got her undivided attention, and for whatever reason it makes me feel special when she zeros in on me. I also love how intently she studies me, and it makes me more comfortable that if I'm going to miss out on being with her for part of her days, she'll have started the day with me and my love and the sound of my voice.
Oh yeah, and work today was fine. I was able to fit (not well) into some of my regular work clothes, so that was a relief. My desk was in pretty good shape, and people had been taking care of my cases pretty well, so there wasn't just 2 months worth of work piled up and waiting for me. I was able to text back and forth with Jason pretty much throughout, and I pumped milk twice for little Adria to have a bottle tomorrow, and felt pretty successful there as well. (I think it helps me still feel connected to her, and like I'm not giving up on or unable to meet her needs by going back to work.) The best part of all was that I was only there for 4 hours--by the time I fixed my decaf coffee, greeted all my co-workers and got settled in, I was already halfway out the door! :)
I am SURE the battle isn't over yet, with full time and daycare looming, but all in all I think it was a pretty successful first day back.