10 weeks have passed since Baby Lemonade was born and it’s time to go back to work. My maternity leave may be short by Italian standards but it was fairly long by American Standards. I really can’t complain especially because I had substantial help getting used to this new phase of my life. I have thoroughly enjoyed the transition and I look forward to the juggling act that my new life is about to become. For now, a great deal of peace of mind is given by the fact that my mom is in New York and taking care of the baby while I go to work full time. So the first tip is:
Get Help and Support.
Having the support of my mom who once was a working mother is essential. After all, I have learned my work ethic from my parents and they lead by example. So when I asked my mom to come and stay with us at the end of my maternity leave to ease my return to work (as the baby is still so new), I was met with real enthusiasm and excitement. And now that mom has arrived and is settled in her own routine with Baby Lemonade I realize how incredibly blessed I am. Yes, Baby Lemonade is a very outgoing and friendly infant but those two get along so well that I am almost jealous! If you don’t have your relatives close or visiting like mine, make sure that you get all the help that you need. You may be wonder woman but there are only few hours in the day and you can’t do it all by yourself. And even if you have an amazing nanny or day care, cleaning ladies and secretaries, you need someone to vent, so find another mom who is not the competitive NYC witch type and TALK! Psychological support is key at this point and only someone other than you can tell you if you are going crazy (PPD anyone) or not!
Morning routines at night
With a small child, you need to be even more organized than before. Nights can be a little hectic with Baby Lemonade as she is just learning to sleep a little longer and seems to be as energetic as…. well, me. I used to be a morning person but waking up can be a little tricky if you just went to sleep. So I am making room for my daytime routine at night time. I am laying out my clothes at night so I can leave the guesswork out of the mornings. As I am not ready to cut my hair in a soccer mom pixie (especially because I would look awful) I started doing my hair at night before the baby’s last bottle (or as we call it… The Baby Lemonade Nightcap) to save time in the mornings and look more put together. All this pampering counts as me time and makes my life a lot easier.
Plan the Baby’s Day too!
Babies are wonderful but time flies around them and you don’t even realize you had tasks or chores to do because you were preparing their bottle and changing her diaper and emptying the diaper pail. So, I have been preparing her meals (milk, of course) at night so my mom doesn’t have to scramble in the morning with a hungry/screaming/overall cranky girl. Laying out her clothes and activities for the day is also a good idea: set up the stroller, onesies, toys, bibs, blankets and the diaper bag so that everything is always within reach and you don’t have to run around like a headless chicken.
And now it’s also time to go back to my pre-pregnancy shape and get ready for the summer. I only gained 26 pounds during pregnancy and Baby Lemonade was a really tall girl from the beginning so I lost a lot of weight naturally. But lucky as I was to bounce back and fit in my old clothes within a month of giving birth (and no, dear haters, no tummy tuck was involved, just a medical grade girdle, the Mediterranean diet and Tracy Anderson to help me out), there is a long way to go before I will dare to show my untanned butt in a bikini. So in the next few weeks you’ll hear about my road to pre-pregnancy shape. And it will be a fun ride! As you can imagine the plan is pretty ambitious, some might even say insane, because I want to look better than before… And you’ll be there to witness my journey!