Sometimes I wish I were a Canadian.
Seems like much longer, but I have now been back to work for as many weeks as I had off for maternity leave. Twelve whole weeks, which in this country is considered generous. Still, it didn’t feel like nearly enough time to me. My time off went by so quickly. I thought I would get so much accomplished. Work on the house, have that garage sale I keep talking about, read a great novel or two, maybe even write a children’s book. But I didn’t seem to get any of those things done. Instead I spent most of my days hanging out on the couch, lounging about in my pj’s, and it meant more to me than any of the things on that maternity “to do” list. During those days spent on the couch I got to discover my new son, Henry. I was right there to witness the new discoveries that he was making each day. His first smiles, giggles, and coos. I learned his grumpy face, his hungry face, his happy, tired and excited faces. The zombie eyes, and that adorable smile that occurs exactly 5 seconds later as he is falling asleep in my arms. At first I felt guilty for not doing enough, not cleaning, cooking or creating something for myself. But about 8 weeks into it I realized that the time was going too quickly. He’d gone from 7 lb. to 14 in just two months, and I realized what a shame it would be if I had spent that time doing anything but spending it all with him. It goes so quickly.
I’m fortunate that I got to spend nearly every hour of his first 12 weeks holding, comforting and loving my sweet baby. I just wish I had more weeks. Just as I was beginning to heal from giving birth and get the hang of being a mommy it was time to go back to work. So now I’m looking for ways to steal a few extra moments of cuddles each day before I race off to work. I’m now desperate for a job that allows me to spent time with the people that mean the most to me. It’s a difficult task and I don’t seem to be having much luck so far, so I might just have to create one myself.
Did you know that Canadians get a whole year of maternity leave?