This is the second installment of a series of posts focused on going back to work after having a baby. For me, it really was all about planning and preparation and, while it wasn't always easy, we had a relatively smooth transition going from maternity leave to office/daycare life. I am certainly not an expert but my hope in writing these posts is to help other new moms like me who are finishing up their maternity leave and may be a little nervous about getting back to the workplace and leaving their little one. Just remember, that everyone is different so not everything will work for but use what you can and throw out what you can't!
My mornings are quite different than they used to be. I used to have time to make myself some breakfast and maybe even sit down to eat. Now my mornings consist of at least a thirty minute breastfeeding session followed by getting a little human ready for the day. My husband has been incredibly helpful in this process but I still try the best I can to prep as much as possible ahead of time so I am not rushing around and don't have to wake up any earlier either. (Because, if I have to wake up any earlier with Olivia's current nighttime sleep regression, I may lose my mind.)
Make breakfast. On Sundays, I make my breakfast for the entire week. This is actually something I did quite often before I was even pregnant but it is even more important now. I am breastfeeding so I can't skip meals or else my milk supply drops. I also can't grab stuff on the way to work because, besides taking more time, Olivia reacts to a lot of dairy, fried food, and heavy tomato items. I found that egg casseroles or hashes work really well. I have also found a way to scramble eggs that are "wetter" but finish up perfectly in the microwave.
Prep veggies and sauces. Also, on Sundays, I try and chop veggies that I will use in dinners for at least the first part of the week (so food stays fresh.) I also try to prepare some of the sauces or anything that may take a bit more time. When I come home from work, I would much rather spend my time with Olivia than spend it in the kitchen.
Pick out outfits.I take a look at the weather first since it has been so strange lately. Then I pick out an outfit for every day of the week and hang them in the front part of my closet. This goes pretty quickly on Sunday nights since my wardrobe is pretty reduced and because of my ribbon method (see first post.) Sometimes, I throw an extra outfit in there in case the weather changes or I just don't feel like wearing another outfit I picked out.
Prepare the night before. Every night, even when I am exhausted, I make sure my breakfast and lunch are packed for the next day. I also put all of Olivia's and my bags in one place. We have about five different bags between us with bottles, pumping, and lunch, and I certainly don't want to forget anything. Rich usually prepares her bottles while I put her down for bed.
Prepping ahead of time on Sundays may seem a little annoying but it definitely saves time during the week and gives me time after Olivia goes to bed to hang out with Rich or even get to bed a little earlier on those really tiring days.
I hope this was helpful to all the new working moms out there. As before, feel free to comment below with your tips below - I am definitely still learning too!