Maternity Leave final countdown

I apologize for being MIA for the past week. It’s been a tough week on me emotionally. This is my last week of Maternity Leave, which means on Monday morning, Abby heads off to daycare and I go back to my office after spending 20 weeks with just my baby girl.

First off, let me say how lucky I am that I was able to take so much time to spend with Abby. Secondly, how dare it make me feel “lucky” to get such a small amount of time with her. And thus, the constant battle of Maternity Leave in this Country.

So the end to Maternity Leave. I’m honestly heartbroken that it’s over. I spent most of the week soaking in as much time with Abby as I could, breaking into tears at random moments, and telling myself that it was all for the best. And every time I soothed her during hysterical cries, I would battle visions of her at daycare, unable to be calmed by teachers. How could they understand that her long cries indicated hunger but her short cries just needed cuddles? Would they cuddle her, or would they be too distracted? And in the next instance, I’d remember that they are professionals, and her teachers handle this situation everyday. And immediately, while she would still be crying in my arms as I rocked her, I’d feel defeat believing that her teachers would be able to sooth her better than I could, thus making me feel like a failure as her mom. I hate that I can’t stay with her longer, especially as she has just entered this incredible exploration stage. Her gaze follows our pup around the room, she reaches for everything possible, and she’s trying with all of her might to transition to crawling. It’s going to happen before we know it. And of course now I’m terrified that I’m going to miss that moment when she finally pulls her self up and coordinates her limbs to move across the floor.
I know it is for the best. We talked about the benefits of her going to daycare and the importance of me continuing to work – electricity, food, and a roof over our head is important. But, I just didn’t expect it to be this hard. Everyone tells me she’ll be fine, she won’t even notice, and that makes me feel even worse. I hate that she won’t even notice that I’m gone. If she doesn’t notice that I’m gone, will she even notice when I return? I’m going to miss her so much. Just the thought of leaving her is breaking my heart, and she won’t even notice that I’m not there to comfort her when she wakes up in a foreign crib, or when she is fed by a complete stranger, or when her pup isn’t there to lick her feet as she attempts to crawl.

Baby girl, you’re growing so fast. I’m sorry I have to leave you when you’re not even five months, but I’m leaving you in amazing hands. Three days a week, you’ll be at daycare with teachers and other children. Two days a week, you’ll be spoiled by Grandma. And every night, I’ll rush home to see you smile, give you diner, and read you a story before bed. Please do not worry that I won’t be there during the day. But please do not forget me either. Mommy loves you baby girl.