I returned to work when Roo was 5 1/2 months old. At the time you only entitled to six months SMP and six months unpaid leave. So before I knew it I was selecting a day nursery for her and back at work.
A little while after I returned to work someone close to me said something to me which has haunted me, even now I can hear those words ringing in my head…
I’m not sure if those words were meant in malice but that is they way they were taken.
When making the decision to return or not to return to work a mum has several decisions to make…
- Can your family survive with one wage coming in? Survive as in all the bills are paid and you can afford the occasional treat?
- If you worked full time before baby could you afford to reduce your hours and work part time? Will your company allow this?
- Cost of childcare, will you make enough to cover the cost of childcare? What type of childcare will you use? Family, day nursery, childminder or nanny?
- Do you want to work? Staring at the same four walls and baby groups isn’t for everyone. Do you want to instil in your children hard work?
- The list of questions is endless…
For me I returned for both financial reasons and being at home full time wasn’t me. I wanted to keep my skills up to date as well as instil a work ethic into my children. Roo understands that both Mummy and Daddy work to provide a house, food and all the others we need in life. Yes we may miss the occasional school event but at least one of us tries to be there whenever we can.
For example, Roo has a reading/maths cafe at school once a week. Last year it was on an afternoon so I would leave work early to attend and this year luckily it falls on a Thursday (my day off) so l can attend. Now the same parents attend these sessions every week and most of those who attend work and have juggled things to attend. Where are the SAHMs? I’m not having a pop at SAHMs but surely you could attend at least a couple of the sessions. I take Tigger with me and he is welcomed into the session along with any other siblings who attend. Not only is this a boost for Roo to see Mummy joining in with her schoolwork but but gets Tigger used to the school environment (fingers crossed he’ll be attending the nursery from January).
So the long and short of it is that yes I work, yes I have children but I don’t think they are missing out because I chose/have to work.