Yesterday was Mother’s Day and, whilst it wasn’t my first experience of being on the receiving end of a card and some flowers, it did mark my first Mother’s Day since I came back to work. My daughter is now over a year old; bringing joy and causing chaos on an almost daily basis.
Coming back to work was a straightforward enough decision. I was excited to be back at my desk, able to have a conversation with fellow adults and – let’s be honest – childcare is expensive. I had ten years in recruitment under my belt and I love my job. Before I had Frankie, I was at my desk from 8am and was always one of the last to leave the office.
Now, I still love my job, but I’ve learned to balance it with the real love of my life: my daughter. The balancing act is not easy. Anyone who says you can have it all clearly hasn’t worked a recruitment desk on two hours sleep thanks to a dose of croup.
That’s not to say, and I’m sure many mums will relate, that there wasn’t a healthy dose of fear surrounding coming back. What would happen if I realised I couldn’t do my job anymore? Who has been taking on my workload whilst I’ve been off? What new systems have the business brought in? What happens if you come back and they realised they coped just fine without you?
Moreover, what would happen if I came back and I couldn’t provide the right balance for my daughter? My “working day” starts hours before I get to my desk. I have to make sure Frankie is up and dressed and on her way to nursery. And, when I get home from work, another full-time job starts all over again as I work on our nightly routine as a family.
Thankfully, I don’t feel the pressure to be on the laptop or the mobile all night, either. Home time really is family time. It really is like having two, full-time jobs. And, for that reason, it’s been the biggest learning curve I could have ever anticipated.
The flexibility that HRC offers me is brilliant. I now work four days instead of five, and it’s really helped me with my productivity and organisation. I have amazed myself at the amount of work I’ve been able to achieve since my return. Another big help was the “Keeping In Touch” days, where I was able to come in to the business and (attempt to) pick up where I left off.
It meant that I didn’t feel like I was coming back to start from scratch – especially since we’d moved office whilst I was off on maternity leave! All of these things have made the transition back to work so much easier.
I had a truly special Mother’s Day, yesterday, and, today, I’m glad to be back at my desk. Six months in from my return, I finally feel like I’ve got a firm grip on things again – and I have loved speaking with my clients and candidates once again.
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