Adjusting to life post-baby isn’t easy for anyone. Below Katie Bugbee shares the phrases you never want to hear as you venture back into the office.
Anyone come back from maternity leave and have one of these comments said? I just got back and live in fear of someone I love saying something dumb (smile and nod, moms. Smile and nod.) And while none of my Care.com colleagues have said any of the following (of course not, that’s why I love them!), these are the retorts we’d all love to say back, if only we could.
What would you add?
- That went by so fast! Yup. In a New York (get no sleep, take no shower, something gross is in my hair) minute.
- How was your break? Great. Although I wouldn’t call giving birth and then spending 24 hours a day in a fog of feeding burping, swaying, crying and occasionally dozing off -- a “break.”
- It’s a baby pooch. It’s what moms are supposed to have! The next time you mention “pooch,” you better be talking about an adorable dog.
- Things went so smoothly. We barely knew you were gone. Cool. So can I go back on leave for a few extra weeks then?
- You’re so lucky – you got soooo much time off! It’s not a paid vacation. Google it. Even Iran has a better maternity leave policy than the US.
- You look exhausted. I actually thought I was holding down “new Mom chic” quite nicely before this little chat.
- But I’m sure your daycare is fine. It is. Because I did hours of due diligence making sure it’s a safe, happy place for my kid. Did my MIL talk to you?
- There’s that Mommy Brain of yours! Don’t worry—it will come back. And it will totally remember that you said that.
- I could never leave my kids with a stranger. Good for you. But our nanny is not a stranger. I’ve known her for a few days.
- What’s “pumping”? Tubing, batteries, suction cups on your ta-ta’s—do you want me to keep going?
- Now you get to talk to grownups! Trust me, it’s not all it’s cracked up to be.
- Did you get new clothes? Yes, because I can’t fit into my old ones. Want to see pictures of my adorable pooch?
- It’s nice to have a break from being a mom sometimes, huh? Sorry, I was just thinking about the diapers I have to pick up on the way home, whether my baby is handling this transition, and if I remembered to send my oldest in with his permission slip —what was your question again?
- You’re almost back to your old size. Are you trying to make me cry?
- How could you leave the adorable face every day? Okay. Cryyyyyyingggg.
- I have about 15 projects waiting for you. Cool! Hand them over to me -- with a bottle of wine.
As I venture back into the work-home swing of things, I want to wish all my fellow working moms out there the best. I’ve done this two times before, and can assure you – it does get better. Home-life craziness settles into a groove and you find your place at work again. But it does take voicing your needs a little more – and a little louder. Good luck!