Daddy’s going back to work

Dani’s thoughts and feelings on Chris going back to work….

…it sucks.

The end.

That is all I wanted to write….but perhaps I should explain myself a bit more.  Although I reckon that many of you mums out there won’t need me to write an explanation because we probably feel the same way about our partners returning to work after parental leave.

Chris technically doesn’t get parental leave.  In the US, you are lucky to get any parental leave.  Chris saved up his annual leave to allow him to take 3 weeks off for both the birth and learning to become a dad.  Fortunately some of the days include public holidays – Christmas, New Years and Martin Luther King Day.  So that was lucky to get an extra few days without eating into his leave.

Chris’s company does give him a ‘transition week’, which when you add up the time off equals 2.5 days of parental leave.  What is a transition week? Well, he gets to work half days from home…allowing him to support his new family but ease both him and us into working life again.  Makes a lot of sense.  I’ll let you know how that goes!

So Chris’s last day of leave was last Friday.  It has been amazing to have him around.  He has been amazing.  I don’t know how mums do it when their partners go back to work within a few days…or worse, they are simply not around because they are deployed or for some other work related reason.  Why has he been amazing?

  • He has given me confidence that I can do this.
  • He supports my breastfeeding, by making sure I have everything I need – water, food, pillows, blankets, burp cloths, entertainment, timing the feeds.
  • He changes Aviana’s diapers/nappies.
  • He gets up at night to wake up Aviana, give Aviana to me whilst I am in bed so I can nurse her, then put her back down to sleep.
  • We share the burden of dealing with Aviana fussing at night.  But sometimes he takes on more of that share.
  • He has done the cleaning, washing, cooking, tidying, driving etc.  All the things I haven’t been allowed to do for the two weeks of my post partum recovery.
  • He is an expert in all things bath related for Aviana.
  • We take turns in dressing Aviana and trying to figure out what is and isn’t appropriate to wear!
  • He has dashed out to shops to get things we hadn’t thought of or ran out of sooner than expected.
  • He looks after Aviana, even when she is fussing, so that I can take a shower in the morning, and a bath at night (helps with my postpartum recovery).
  • Read the books, googled advice and hacks on looking after a newborn.  Sharing his newfound knowledge with me.
  • Tells me he loves me and how he loves seeing me being a mum.  He also makes me feel like I am more than just a mum to him, I am still his wife.
  • Encourages me to achieve one personal goal a day.
  • Cries with me when I randomly cry (which mostly has been at happy things or pure relief things have worked out well for us)

😦 Dani’s sad face.

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12 thoughts on “Daddy’s going back to work

  1. Amy M. says:

    Even though B hasn’t helped out with nearly as much as your hubby has (That sounds horrible, but I’m being real here!) it was hard when he went back to work as well. Some days I feel very overwhelmed, and I find myself looking at the clock and wishing the time would pass faster until B gets home. But some days aren’t bad at all, and it flies by and B is home before we know it. Since he had just started a new job, he didn’t have any leave time at all! He took off a week with no pay, and then worked from home for a week. He will occasionally work from home one day a week, but usually it’s just me and C. B also makes dinner most nights because it always seems to land right when C is hungry, so I’ll nurse while he cooks. You’ll find your rhythm once he goes back, I promise!

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dani says:

      Of course if Chris had only a short leave (like B did) then this list of how Chris helped would probably be a lot shorter!
      I’ve been wondering about dinner…the same thing has happened to us. Every time it’s my turn to start dinner Aviana decides to feed-or worse cluster feeds!! I said to Chris this evening that maybe next week we could try preparing dinners again like normal (rather than eating through our supply of frozen meals!) because I can start earlier in the day. He just laughed at me…!!!!!! Think he might have a point, but we will see!

      Liked by 1 person

      • RJ says:

        The dinner comment cracks me up bc we rarely eat together anymore. One cooks, the other plays with baby. Then we trade off eating. Good luck with your first days on your own. It was hard when my hubby went back to work.

        Like

      • Amy M. says:

        B used to get upset because he would make dinner, but then I couldn’t come sit at the table and eat like we normally did because C would be nursing. He understands now, though he feels bad eating without me. I tried to explain that if he would just eat then he could take her afterwards so I could eat. It’s a big adjustment…seriously dinner is probably the biggest adjustment as a couple we’ve had to make lol!

        Like

    • Dani says:

      I think Chris would love to share a greater part of the parental leave ‘burden’. They have this in the UK now too, and they are potentially going to introduce shared parental leave in my org…although not sure how many people it would apply to! Do you know men who have taken advantage?

      Like

  2. Nara says:

    Aww. That’s great Chris was able to have three weeks off. He sounds like he’s been very useful! 😊 T is way more practical than I am so I have high hopes! Hoping you settle into a new routine soon. X

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Disorderly Love says:

    I dread this…Scott has accumulated about 3 weeks but may only be able to take 2 for some reason with his job & I have already been freaking out about it lol I think his job technically has paternity leave but it doesn’t offer any pay /:
    It’s nice they offer some sort of transition period when he returns to work, though.
    Also, something I would love to read about in the future in reference to, “He has dashed out to shops to get things we hadn’t thought of or ran out of sooner than expected,” are what were those things you didn’t think of or ran out of too soon???

    Liked by 1 person

    • Dani says:

      I feel like 2 weeks is a good amount of time and then maybe a few days extra to help out on a few days after so it’s not such a shock to the system – for both of you! It’s been hard on Chris going back to work too. He’s exhausted!!!

      Liked by 1 person

    • Dani says:

      Whoops pressed reply too soon!

      The things we hadn’t planned for I’m sure you won’t be needing! (I hope anyway!) we needed preemie stuff because Aviana was so small. Preemie nipples and diapers. Formula for supplementing. We tried different pacifiers -she still doesn’t really like a pacifier. Oh one thing you can get in advance that I didn’t know about was vitamin D drops if you plan to breastfeed. If you formula feed then you prob won’t need them.
      Things we ran out of though was just fresh food! We had prepared about 40 frozen meals so we just needed a small shop – we still haven’t had to do a big grocery shop yet! Admittedly I’m getting sick of stuffed pasta and chilli con carne now!!!! 😂

      Liked by 1 person

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