Can you relate to this: your maternity leave starts, and those 16 weeks (or more) sounds like an endless holiday? An ocean of free time. Time you can spend tidying up, making photo albums, meeting up with friends you haven’t seen in ages, completing all those big and small chores on your ‘to do’ list which never seem to get done.
Of course, everyone tells you that you will never get all those things done during your leave, and the people saying this are all women who have the experience, and who’ve been there. But still, you don’t believe them. Well, I didn’t… A baby really just sleeps, eats, poops and pees, especially in those first few weeks. And really mostly sleeping, right? So when my baby sleeps I can get loads of little things done. Right…?
So, how do I put this…. The weeks fly by, and every time you blink another day has passed…
When I first went on maternity leave, halfway through May, the weather was amazing. It was the start of a very long period of leave for me, and the first item on my list of things to do was to simply enjoy it. I had weeks for the rest of my list, and I could do it all when the weather turned bad. We sat on terraces in the sun, went out for meals, to the beach, and went on lovely long bike rides. In brief: I enjoyed myself. Work was something I would get to when the baby was here. I wrote a blog every week for my website and kept myself busy all day. Oh, and I also did part one of my doula training (nearly forgot about that), but enjoying myself was the number 1 priority, and I did so as much as possible. 🙂
And then, after 7 weeks of leave Liv was born, and the enjoyment continued, and just got better and better. Our daily routine was basically non-existent, but always included some time on a terrace, a lot of eating out, and having fun! I know the more than once I said to Denny, “I don’t understand why people with babies get nothing done. We have masses of time for everything!” And we did have masses of time, but don’t for one minute think that we used it to do all those things on my list. I was a new mother, and that’s a time which you should… enjoy! So I did, completely!
The planned trip to Australia to speak at BabySummit wasn’t going to happen (I’m going in 2016, which works out much better), so we booked a holiday in Sardinia at the end of September/ beginning of October. The first workshop I was going to give was planned for when we got back from Sardinia.
What? First workshop?! Already?! But I haven’t done any of the things of my list of things to do…
If it was just the workshops, then it would be alright, but of course there were people I couldn’t say ‘no’ to, so as a result I am now once again on call for birth photography, instead of at the end of December, as planned. My website is also being given a make-over, my logo has been redone, and there are a number of interesting projects running in the background. And that’s not to mention the pregnancy album I still have to make, and the album of our trip to Sardinia, and Liv’s newborn album.
And a blog every Monday…
But it’s time for that to change. I reallty need to give my attention to other things, so that I can finish that list, and be free to concentrate fully on my birth photography, and Liv, of course. Because I no longer want to work full time.
I have a lot of topics I still want to cover in my blog, but I want the feeling of ‘being obligated to publish one every Monday’ to be gone. I’ve done it with much pleasure for over a year, and I will keep doing it for a long time, but not because of an obligation, every Monday. Rather, when I want to, when I have time, and when I have something cool to say.
Because in the end all those experienced moms were right: your leave flies past! But I definitely enjoyed it, and that counts for something right?