10 Reasons I'm Scared for My Maternity Leave to End

nicole fabian-weber
Oh, I see how it is.
Come next Monday, my 12-week maternity leave is over, and like most things that need handling in my life, I am not handling this impending situation with aplomb. Full disclosure, I'm crapping my proverbial diapers -- which is why I'm writing this here post right now. I'm trying to ease myself into the role of Working Mom ever so gently, as opposed to diving head first into this terrifyingly uncharted territory.

So. It only seems natural that my “practice” blog post would cover this topic. Think of this as a public diary entry, if you will. Except I normally don't make lists like this in my diary. And I don't have time for a diary. Because I'm a Working Mom!

Here are 10 reasons I’m scared to go back to work.

1. I am scared that my baby is going to hate her nanny.

2. I am scared that my baby is going to love her nanny. More than she loves me. I’m already preparing myself for that moment when my daughter frantically outstretches her arms to the nanny when I’m standing right there.

3. I am scared that I will never see The View, The Talk, The Chew, or The Revolution again. How will I know which foods contain the highest amounts of omega-3 fatty acids or which haircut will take 10 years off of my face?

4. I am scared that I am going to miss stuff. Big stuff. Like my daughter’s first crawl, her first laugh, her first steps. What kind of crap mother misses stuff like that? You, Nicole, you!

5. I am scared that my days of taking long, luxurious showers are forever over. Previously a task I dreaded, I created a routine where every day, when my daughter would go down for her “big” nap, I’d take a shower. A good shower. A shower where I’d shave my legs, perhaps indulge in a deep condition. Now that I’m working, there won’t be time for deep conditions or leg shavings. So my legs will be hairy and my hair will be brittle. And my husband will be grossed out by me. And he’ll divorce me. And marry the nanny. Who probably has smooth legs.

6. I am scared that I’m going to be thinking/worrying about my baby the entire time I’m at work, which will obviously make me a terrible worker, and which will obviously get me fired. Then I’ll have no job, and my family and I will be out on the street, eating out of the dumpster near Whole Foods since it, most likely, has the most organic trash in it.

7. I am scared that the nanny isn’t going to be able to get my baby down for a nap the first few days, which will mess up everything

8. I am scared that, despite her excellent references, the nanny is going to wind up being a completely different person she’s presented herself to be. But I don’t want to be one of those crazy people who sticks a nanny cam inside a stuffed seahorse. So I won’t. And then she'll probably wind up stealing everything in sight. Including my baby. Fantastic.

9. I am scared that as long as I'm working and my child (children?) is, well, a child, I will feel guilty and never fully be present in one place.

10. I am scared that the first week will be tough for my baby, and she’ll be fussy, and the nanny will quit. And then I’ll really be f***ed.

What was it like for you when you went back to work? Help!

Image via Nicole Fabian-Weber



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Lovin... LovinJerseyMama

Unfortunately with my first I had horrible experiences with both the private daycare and then after that, the sitter. I won't go into detail as I don't want to make you any more nervous then you already are. But I ended up going from full time to working two days a week when my husband was off so he could watch her in the safety of our own home. With my second, I stayed home full time for the first two years and now I am back to working just weekends while hubby watches both. I wish my daycare/private caregiver experiences were better, I really do. Just learn to go with your maternal instincts if you feel something is wrong. That's the best advice I can give. Oh, and don't stress about every little bump or bruise. Kids get hurt. I swear mine get bruises just from reading a book lol. Your baby will love you no matter who watches them. With my first I was nervous about her wanting to be with someone else more than me. But she was always thrilled to see me when I picked her up. And we had our night time routine together :). You make the best of the time you have with your children. And that's what really matters. I don't remember all the things I got when I was younger. I remember the time I spent with my mom.

kever... keversole

I am 34 weeks pregnant with my first and all of these things have already got me worried. I supose that's normal tho.

nonmember avatar Kelly

I can tell you, I had these same fears. We have a nanny and so my fears were EXACTLY the same. I did not have a horrific expereince (way to freak her out further LovinJerseyMama, thats exactly what she needed...) like pp did. They will NEVER love the nanny more than you, but there might be a time where she reaches for the nanny and you are right there...but that happens with daddy too. 99.9% of the time, you will be the preferred one. you are mommy. NOBODY can take your place. As for the first big stuff, that wsa a huge concern of mine. Ive not missed any yet, and if I did, the nanny was wise enough to not tell me and play along when I excitedly told her of first crawls and laughs. The first week is the hardest, and it gets gradually easier every day...but is never totally easy. my daughter will be 1 on Sunday, and I still think about her all day every day. Thats normal. Youre a mom =o)

kjbug... kjbugsmom1517

Definitely listen to your instincts. If something seems wrong it probably is. I cried allllll the time the first year i worked when my oldest was a baby. She really did like the sitter more. When she started talking she would tell me no when it was time to go home. I ended up getting let go from a job and have been home since. Going on 5 years next month and my youngest is about to start pre k. Its hard work trying to get every possible moment in with them when u work. Just dam hard.

nonmember avatar teach

You will be ok. Your baby will be ok. Say this over and over. There is an adjustment period, but you get over the hump. My son loves his childcare, his teachers and his little friends at school, but there is nothing like the feeling I get everyday when I pick him up and he crawls up to see me. It makes me a more patient, excited mother when I am with him. Towards the end of my maternity leave I was feeling like I needed to be superwomen-clean house, stocked pantry, dinner on the table every night and now that I am back to work all my off time is family time. The important things get done after he goes to bed and thats that. My house is never spic and span, however....something has to give:-) Also--a supportive partner goes a long way. Single parents are rockstars, I would be a mess if my husband and I did not split chores and parenting duties!

nonmember avatar madison16

I was a full-time nanny and my charge always loved his mom before me (his grandparents who lived on the other side of the U.S. was another story). I loved him fully and still keep in touch and he is now 8 years old. Best experience of my life. A nanny loves you child almost as much as you do. Embrace the fact that another human being loves your child and will forever lay down their life to save him/her.

nonmember avatar Alison

Sorry that I have nothing useful to offer you in the way of advice, but I just had to comment that your baby has the most precious face :)

marip... mariposa21


NicoleFW NicoleFW

Thanks, ladies :)

nonmember avatar zizzler

When I was a nanny, the little girl I watched would push her mother towards the door to try and get her to leave so that I would come and watch her. She snubbed her mom all the time and would ask for me instead (would only let me brush her teeth, etc). Some kids DO prefer their nannies, though not usually infants. But I think it's uncommon. I'm not trying to scare you, it's just one of many realities when someone else is being paid to raise your kids. People complain about the monetary cost of childcare, but there is also a (potentially large) emotional price for both parent and child.

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